in the UK
Regulating the risks associated with economic activities is a feature of modern societies and one in which the state increasingly seeks to co-opt the regulatory powers of corporations. This book examines the impact of a system of enforced self-regulation on the corporate life of British Railways. It uses this case study of occupational health and safety regulation to focus on broader theoretical and empirical discussions of regulation, risk, and corporate activities. A central organizing perspective of this book is that regulation is a form of risk management. It examines how workplace risks in modern societies are managed by businesses and the individuals within them and considers what influence the law has in this. The tensions between the constitutive and controlling aspects of regulatory law are analysed with reference to in-depth empirical data about corporate and individual compliance and non-compliance. Related concerns about the social control of organizational and economic life are explored and their policy and theoretical implications examined. These issues are especially significant following the privatization of Britain's rail network and the introduction of regulatory systems which are highly reliant on industry self-regulation. More generally, their significance is highlighted by the increasing popularity of risk-based approaches to corporate governance. The book argues that if regulation is to be an effective way of managing risk we need to pay more attention to the assumptions we make about corporate life and be more prepared to use the full range of regulatory sources and tools available to us.
Oxford University Press
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