The Politics of Precaution: Regulating Health, Safety, and Environmental Risks in Europe and the United States

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Overview

"This is comparative politics at its very best. Vogel takes the reader on a fascinating transatlantic journey to show how and why regulatory leadership shifts with political pressures, elite preferences, and new views on risk management. His book should be required reading for everyone concerned about the safety of man and environment."—Lennart J. Lundqvist, University of Gothenburg, Sweden

"Written by an eminent and eloquent scholar in the field, The Politics of Precaution addresses a major issue in risk regulation and transatlantic relations. The book's central claim is that there has been an overall shift from greater American to greater European relative precaution and stringency in risk regulation. Whether one agrees with that claim or not, one must contend with Vogel's argument."—Jonathan B. Wiener, Duke University and coeditor of The Reality of Precaution: Comparing Risk Regulation in the United States and Europe

"The Politics of Precaution challenges some commonly held views about the political economy of regulation. The book will serve as a useful counter to those given to easy assumptions about the differences in how Europeans and Americans regulate similar consumer and environmental risks."—Keith Hawkins, professor emeritus of law and society, University of Oxford

"The Politics of Precaution addresses an intriguing transatlantic topic, contains a wealth of interesting case studies, and is written by a seasoned and perceptive scholar. It is a serious contribution to the literature."—John D. Graham, Indiana University

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Editorial Reviews

LSE Politics and Policy blog
The Politics of Precaution was an engaging and well researched work which raises fascinating questions about comparative policy change.
— Natalie Beinisch
LSE Politics and Policy blog - Natalie Beinisch
The Politics of Precaution was an engaging and well researched work which raises fascinating questions about comparative policy change.
Choice
Vogel has written extensively on the politics of risk regulation over the past two decades, and this monograph affords him the opportunity to update, qualify, and amend previous examinations. The result is a fruitful analysis of changes to transatlantic policy making regarding genetically engineered food, chemicals in the environment, air toxics, and consumer product safety.
Foreign Affairs - Andrew Moravcsik
In this engaging book, Vogel argues that extreme conservatives in the United States have brought regulatory innovation to a standstill, aided by decentralized and gridlocked U.S. political institutions. . . . [The Politics of Precaution] should be required reading for businesspeople, officials, and citizens interested in the role of government in the modern world.
World Medical & Health Policy - Susan J. Tolchin
Vogel's study is a very valuable and unusual contribution to the literature of regulation, raising important questions, and correlating the important question of the relationship between systems of governance and the efficacy of regulation.
From the Publisher
Winner of the 2012 ONE Best Book Award, Organizations and the Natural Environment Division of the Academy of Management

Winner of the 2013 Levine Prize, Research Committee on the Structure of Government of the International Political Science Association

"The Politics of Precaution was an engaging and well researched work which raises fascinating questions about comparative policy change."—Natalie Beinisch, LSE Politics and Policy blog

"Vogel has written extensively on the politics of risk regulation over the past two decades, and this monograph affords him the opportunity to update, qualify, and amend previous examinations. The result is a fruitful analysis of changes to transatlantic policy making regarding genetically engineered food, chemicals in the environment, air toxics, and consumer product safety."—
Choice

"In this engaging book, Vogel argues that extreme conservatives in the United States have brought regulatory innovation to a standstill, aided by decentralized and gridlocked U.S. political institutions. . . . [The Politics of Precaution] should be required reading for businesspeople, officials, and citizens interested in the role of government in the modern world."—Andrew Moravcsik, Foreign Affairs

"Vogel's study is a very valuable and unusual contribution to the literature of regulation, raising important questions, and correlating the important question of the relationship between systems of governance and the efficacy of regulation."—Susan J. Tolchin, World Medical & Health Policy

"Once again, David Vogel has given us an important book. It offers a provocative empirical phenomenon and the depth and breadth of Vogel's analysis rewards the patient and careful reader. . . . [T]he book shows the importance of social and political factors in shaping the business environment. It's a vital text for business strategy and comparative public policy scholars and a rewarding one for nearly everyone else."—Matthew Potoski, Perspectives on Politics

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780691124162
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press
  • Publication date: 4/29/2012
  • Pages: 332
  • Sales rank: 488,827
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

David Vogel is professor at the Haas School of Business and in the Department of Political Science at the University of California, Berkeley. His books include "The Market for Virtue: The Potential and Limits of Corporate Social Responsibility."

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Table of Contents

Preface ix
Chapter One: The Transatlantic Shift in Regulatory Stringency 1
Chapter Two: Explaining Regulatory Policy Divergence 22
Chapter Three: Food Safety and Agriculture 43
Chapter Four: Air Pollution 103
Chapter Five: Chemicals and Hazardous Substances 153
Chapter Six: Consumer Safety 189
Chapter Seven: Public Risk Perceptions and the Preferences of Policy Makers 219
Chapter Eight: The Law and Politics of Risk Assessment 252
Chapter Nine: Broader Implications 279
Index 295

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