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Regulation and Its Reform Paperback – January 31, 1984

ISBN-13: 978-0674753761 ISBN-10: 0674753763 Edition: Reprint

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 486 pages
  • Publisher: Harvard University Press; Reprint edition (January 1, 1984)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0674753763
  • ISBN-13: 978-0674753761
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.2 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #507,120 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


The theories developed in this book undergird many of the deregulation reforms achieved over the past five years. They will have an even greater influence on the direction of regulation in the decade to come. (Lloyd N. Cutler)

This is an ambitious, impressive, and, I think, important book. (Alfred E. Kahn)

A solid contribution to the reform of regulation, approaching the subject with the incisiveness, lucidness, and logical thinking which is a Breyer hallmark. (Senator Paul Laxalt)

A book of central importance in the growing national debate over government regulation...that more than any other, is likely to shape the future course of the issue in the 1980s. (Senator Edward M. Kennedy)

A superb text for instructing law students on the practical context of administrative law. (Louis B. Schwartz)

An excellent summary of regulatory practice and policy...It tells us how regulation works, when it fails, where it should be changed, and what to do to change it. (American Political Science Review)


The theories developed in this book undergird many of the deregulation reforms achieved over the past five years. They will have an even greater influence on the direction of regulation in the decade to come.
--Lloyd N. Cutler --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J. Selby on November 24, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Rarely does a book come out that is as well done as this. I'm a doctoral candidate who studies communications and technology policy, an area that is rapidly becoming more critical as the future of Internet governance is being negotiated. I came across this book while compiling reading lists for my qualifying exams and was amazed to find that it made my personal top five out of the hundreds of books and articles (yes, nearly 300) that I read either entirely or in part. Considering that this book is from the mid-1980s, that's incredible.

Breyer's book is timeless because it is structured in a way that marries theory with application and isn't specific to a single industry. It begins by explaining the circumstances under which regulation becomes necessary (ie. either to correct a market distortion that won't self-resolve or to meet a social goal that the market will never fulfill on its own). The book then covers the different types of market distortions and the different approaches to correcting them, using multiple examples from industry. The arguments are comprehensive and well-organized. The language is clear and precise. But then, Breyer is an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court with a reputation for pragmatism so this should come as no surprise.

There is no other book like this on the topic of regulation. Seriously. It doesn't fall prey to management-speak. It treats the topic of regulation as a serious subject for examination without hyperbole, polemic, or political soap-box. How refreshing.

I would not hesitate to assign sections from this book to undegraduates, law students, MBAs, and doctoral students.
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