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Title: Public Servants and Regulator Capture in Energy and Environmental Governance
Contributor(s): Holley, Cameron (author); Kennedy, Amanda  (author); Mutongwizo, Tariro  (author)orcid ; Shearing, Clifford (author)
Publication Date: 2021
Early Online Version: 2019-11-19
DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-03008-7_7-1
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Related DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-03008-7

The rapid pace of change, uncertainty, and social contest associated with emerging regulatory spaces create challenges for public servants. In particular, their capacity to act in the public interest may be constrained as contesting interests vie for influence in nascent regulatory environs. This chapter explores these issues and the potential for regulatory capture in the context of unconventional gas and its regulation. Empirically based case studies of regulators in Texas and Colorado in the USA and Queensland, Australia, are relied on. The existing regulatory frameworks governing unconventional gas in each state are considered to enable a thorough examination of the landscape of which public servants and their regulatory agencies are a part. The chapter demonstrates that the speed at which unconventional gas exploration is taking place creates challenges for public servants and regulatory agencies, as laws may not be aligned to practice. The chapter draws on its findings to reflect on the specific regulatory practices that are needed to ensure the accountability and legitimacy of the public sector in such contested spaces, including reforming state regulatory systems and pursuing alternative governance pathways in which relationships between industry, government, and society might be reconfigured.

Publication Type: Book Chapter
Grant Details: ARC/DP170100281
Source of Publication: The Palgrave Handbook of the Public Servant, p. 835-852
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
Place of Publication: Cham, Switzerland
ISBN: 9783030299804
Fields of Research (FoR) 2020: 480204 Mining, energy and natural resources law
440299 Criminology not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2020: 170599 Environmentally sustainable energy activities not elsewhere classified
230203 Political systems
HERDC Category Description: B1 Chapter in a Scholarly Book
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Editor: Editor(s): Helen Sullivan, Helen Dickinson and Hayley Henderson
Appears in Collections:Book Chapter
School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences

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