Evidence-based Instruments


Does the RIA process ensure participation, transparency and quality evaluation?

RIA analyses consistently involve stakeholders by means of consultation or collaboration, results are transparently communicated to the public and assessments are effectively evaluated by an independent body on a regular basis.
Consultation with stakeholders is an essential part of the RIA process. In principle, all those who are affected by new legislation can express their views in advance. The parties concerned may include, among others, public authorities, professional organizations, non-governmental organizations or business entities. Czechia has been one of the few countries featuring an independent RIA. Since 2011, quality control has rested with the RIA Board, an independent commission affiliated with the Government Legislative Council. This body a) coordinates and methodically manages the RIA process; b) processes the material documents for the working commission; and c) on the basis of an opinion of the working committee, if available, drafts the draft opinion of the Legislative Council of the Government or the Chairman of the Legislative Council of the Government for the RIA area. The Board has increased in size to 17 members with 11 meetings during 2017.
The ministry in charge of preparing a specific piece of legislation or regulation includes relevant stakeholders in the RIA process, such as affected ministries and interest organizations. If, for instance, a proposal is expected to involve costs for business, the Ministry of Business would be consulted. The ministry would also consult with business interests. The proposal to be submitted to the legislature would list all departments, agencies and organizations that had been consulted. The rules require the assessment to be in non-technical language so that it is accessible to the public. The corporatist aspect of preparing laws may have decreased in the last decade, but organizations are still very involved in administrative structures.

There is a strong tradition of publishing impact assessments as reports or special publications. In addition, parliamentary committees and members of parliament can request further information and documentation.
Cirkulære om bemærkninger til lovforslag og andre regeringsforslag og om fremganhsmåden ved udarbejdelse af lovforslag, redegørelser, administrative forskrifter m.v. https://www.retsinformation.dk/Forms/R0710.aspx?id=20940 (accessed 3 May 2013).

Jørgen Grønnegård Christensen, Peter Munk Christiansen and Marius Ibsen, Politik og forvaltning. 4th edition. Copenhagen. Hans Reitzels Forlag, 2017.
The National Regulatory Control Council (Normenkontrollrat, NKR) cooperates with a large number of different actors on various levels of the administration. Its cooperation with German states and local authorities has intensified, in particular with the development of methodological standards for assessing compliance costs. In its 2018 annual report, the NKR claimed that the costs for new regulations and laws had peaked in 2017, while in 2018 costs had declined to €867.4 million. The economy accounted for the highest share (about 90%), followed by the public administration (8%) and private households (only 2%).

However, the NKR argued that public administration digitalization processes in Germany strongly lagged behind other European countries, wasting important opportunities for further cost reductions.

The new “one-in-one-out” rule, introduced in 2015, should reduce the financial burdens on enterprises. This rule means that all new costs for enterprises and state bureaucracy (the “ins”) have to be compensated for by additional regulations that reduce costs (the “outs”). In 2017, the rule reduced the costs for enterprises about €302 million.
Normenkontrollrat (2018): Jahresbericht des Normenkontrollrates 2018:

The RIA process displays deficiencies with regard to one of the three objectives.
Impact assessment guidelines adopted in 2007 still provide a general framework for the process of regulatory impact assessment. The Revision Bureau of the Ministry of Justice’s Law Drafting Department monitors compliance with these impact assessment guidelines. Impact assessments cover the economic, administrative, environmental and social impacts of proposed legislation. The guidelines describe what kind of impact may be involved, how the impact may be assessed, and what methods and information sources are available. The guidelines also specify the extent to which this information must be provided in the assessments. For instance, assessments may deal with proposals’ potential economic impact on households, businesses and public finances as well as overall economic impact. Concerning methodology, guidelines recommend the use of statistical data, questionnaire data, expert analyses and when necessary, qualitative methods. Generally speaking, the regulatory impact assessment process is well-structured and of a high quality. However, in its annual review for 2017 assessment, the Finnish Council of Regulatory Impact noted that although guidelines for drafting laws were available, the guidelines tended to be somewhat inconsistent and overlapping. Accordingly, the council recommended that a revised and harmonized set of impact assessment guidelines should be prepared and that these should also include guidance on assessing the impacts of EU legislation.
Ministry of Justice (2008): “Impact Assessment in Legislative Drafting - Guidelines”. Helsinki, Publication 2008:4.
Finnish Council of Regulatory Impact Analysis: Annual Review 2017., https://vnk.fi/documents/10616/7861578/Finnish+Council+of+Regulatory+Impact+Analysis+Annual+Review+2017/
New Zealand
The New Zealand Treasury periodically commissions independent reviews of the quality of RIA. Based on these reviews, the RIA system has been refined over time. The approach adopted has a strong emphasis on a regulatory impact statement (RIS) being embedded as part of a good polcy development process rather than being a compliance requirement to be hurdled at the end of the policy development process. RIS are now produced for all substantive government bills and are widely accepted by departments, although systematic evidence on their use by ministers and parliamentarians is lacking.
The major development in the period after 2008 was the introduction of statutory expectations for departmental chief executives concerning regulatory stewardship. Treasury has been proactive in developing guidance for the new regulatory stewardship provisions applying to departmental chief executives. Moreover as part of the government’s response in 2015 to the Productivity Commission Inquiry, departments are now required to publicly disclose their strategies and systems for meeting their regulatory stewardship expectations. These requirements are works in process.

The quality of RISs, while improving, remains unclear. The Treasury’s RIS on the proposed Regulatory Responsibility Act commented “We all know that the analysis we see in Regulatory Impact Statements (RISs) is often not of the highest standard and as a consequence is little used or valued” (Ayto 2011). The Treasury estimates that in 2012 only 62% of RIAs fully met cabinet requirements and subsequent reviews “suggest that the quality of RISs has not improved” (Sapere Research Group 2015).
Gill, Derek 2016. Regulatory Coherence: The Case of New Zealand. ERIA Discussion Paper Series 2016-12. Wellington: University of Wellington.
Ayto, Jonathan 2011. Regulatory Impact Statement: Regulating for Better legislation – What is the Potential of a Regulatory Responsibility Act? https://treasury.govt.nz/sites/default/files/2011-03/ris-tsy-rbr-mar11.pdf
Sapere Research Group. 2015. Regulatory Impact Analysis Evaluation 2015. Report Prepared for the Treasury. http://www.srgexpert.com/publications/our-people-publicat-547/
OECD Regulatory Policy Outlook 2015 Country profile New Zealand. https://www.oecd.org/gov/regulatory-policy/New%20Zealand-web.pdf
The quality of RIAs associated with parliamentary bills shows great variation, but is generally good. At a minimum, parliamentary bills describe the financial and administrative (governmental) consequences of a proposal. Some also consider environmental and climate effects. Other costs are not quantified systematically or regularly when preparing bills. Affected parties will be also typically be invited to present their views in a public hearing, before a decision is being made. The RIA system is strong in terms of consultation, transparency and creating a broad political consensus around decisions. However, it is weaker in terms of technical quality.
RIAs are obliged to identify one or several alternatives to the option chosen by an initiator. According to the Advisory Board on Administrative Burden Reduction (ACTAL) guidelines, alternative options for administrative burden reduction assessments (ABRAs) are investigated. In principle, the option involving the greatest cost reduction ought to be selected. The extent to which practice follows theory is not known. Stakeholders and decision-makers have been involved in the process of producing RIAs, making burden-reduction analyses more effective. The status of ACTAL as an independent body for evaluation has been changed to a legally established permanent advisory body.

Stakeholders and interested parties, typically including semi-public bodies and lobbyists, are mostly consulted in the intra- or interministerial preparation of bills and policy proposals. Before a draft is passed onto the Council of Ministers, a proposal has to pass a wide-range of quality tests for, for example, budgetary effects, business effects, administrative burden effects, and societal and environmental effects. After passing the administrative burden test, ACTAL (a semi-independent watchdog) scrutinizes the proposal once more. Sometimes departments publicize a draft bill as part of an e-consultation process to solicit feedback from citizens, but this practice is exceptional.
W. Voermans et al., 2012. Legislative processes in transition, Leiden University (open access.leideuniv.nl, accessed 31 October 2018)

www.actal.nl/over-actal/taken-en-bevoegdheden/ (consulted 26 October 2014)

Staatscourant nr. 29814, 29 Mei 2017, Besluit van 17 mei 2017, nr. 2017000809, houdende instelling van het Adviescollege toetsing regeldruk

V. Bekkers and A. Edwards, 2018. The role of social media in the policy process, in H. Colebatch and R. Hoppe (eds.), Handbook of Policy, Process and Governing, Cheltenham, Edward Elgar
The Regulatory Policy Committee (RPC), a body established in 2009 and independent since 2012, is responsible for quality evaluation and impact assessment. The RPC provides feedback to the Reducing Regulation Committee, a sub-committee of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, on the quality of the analysis and evidence presented. The RPC does not actively solicit input from outside the government department concerned, but is open to submissions from other stakeholders on the impacts of proposed regulation. Transparency and guidance is provided on the government website (gov.uk) detailing how to contact the RPC. The government invites direct comment on the process in an effort to engage citizens and, perhaps more importantly, businesses. To reduce regulatory costs for businesses, the government committed to a Business Impact Target. There is a one-in-three-out principle for new regulations, with information regularly updated online.

This is again contrasted by the fact that these rules are not applied in the planning and execution of the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union.
According to the Basic Guidelines for Implementing Policy Evaluation, revised in March 2007, the necessity, efficiency and effectiveness of measures are to be the central considerations in evaluations. However, issues of equity and priority are also to be included. The structure and content of assessments are further clarified in the Policy Evaluation Implementation Guidelines of 2005 and the Implementation Guidelines for Ex Ante Evaluation of Regulations of 2007. All of these specifications contain quite demanding tasks that must be performed as a part of the evaluations.

Critics have argued that many officials regard RIA as bothersome and lack strong incentives to take it seriously. Having RIA run by a line ministry, the MIC, instead of a powerful independent agency, does not seem to be very effective.

According to recent data, Japan scores considerably below the OECD average with regard to RIA implementation, particularly in the areas of oversight and quality control.
Andrei Greenawalt, The Regulatory Process in Japan in Comparison with the United States, RIETI Column 318, 2015, http://www.rieti.go.jp/en/columns/a01_0431.html

Naohiro Yashiro, Regulatory Coherence: The Case of Japan, ERIA Discussion Paper 2016-16, March 2016, http://www.eria.org/publications/discussion_papers/DP2016-16.html

Nikolai Malyshev, Regulatory Impact Assessment: State of Play in OECD Countries, Paper for the KDI-OECD Seminar on Improving Regulatory Governance: trends, practices and the way forward, 6 September 2017
The annotation requires a description of stakeholder participation. Minimum requirements can be met by a simple statement detailing when stakeholders were consulted. Annotations may include information on stakeholder inputs, reactions or needs.

Annotations are publicly available along with the draft act of legislation. They serve as an explanatory accompaniment to the draft and are often referenced in communications about the draft.

Annotations are not assessed by an independent body. However, they are monitored by the government office as part of its oversight of the decision-making process. Inadequacies in the annotation can lead to proposals being returned for revision prior to consideration by the cabinet. An annual monitoring process by the government office can lead to improvements in the system. The latest such revision took place in 2013.
Cabinet of Ministers (2013), Simplification of Draft Legislation Annotations, Press release, Available at (in Latvian): https://lvportals.lv/dienaskartiba/255276-vienkarsos-tiesibu-aktu-projektu-anotacijas-un-uzlabos-to-satura-kvalitati-2013, Last assessed: 06.01.2019
RIA was introduced in Mexico in 1997 and its usage has spread from the federal government to some state governments. It has established itself as a legitimate part of the policymaking process. The relevant government agency, CONAMER (and its predecessor, COFEMER), is responsible to an interdepartmental committee that ultimately reports to the Ministry of Economy. CONAMER does not have a veto on new proposals, but it must be consulted and can express an opinion. Its position vis-à-vis the ministries was strengthened by the new law on regulation in 2018. It can prevent new regulations from coming into force until the consultation process is complete. CONAMER has also been active in negotiating the streamlining of procedures with individual Mexican states. This is significant, as much regulation is generated at subnational levels. After a quiet start, COFEMER/CONAMER has played a significant role in Mexico’s pro-competitive policy. Its annual reports are publicly available and provide critical assessments on regulatory projects.
As mentioned, RIAs play some role in Sweden but the system is less elaborate compared to many other countries. The Swedish model of RIA seems to perform reasonably well with regard to participation and communication but less so in terms of independent evaluations.

Overall, simplifying regulatory frameworks appears to be conducted fairly ad hoc. For instance, the Simplex project in the Department of Industry and Economic Development aimed at removing regulations that were either obsolete or unnecessarily obstructing private businesses. The project appears to have practiced RIA without applying the entire RIA framework.

The increasing number of inspections agencies created specifically to review and evaluate the performance of other agencies in areas such as health care and social insurance is likely to strengthen quality evaluation and transparency.
While stakeholder participation in regulatory impact assessment (RIA) procedures is a particularly strong point in Switzerland, communications processes vary between regions and policy fields. For in-depth RIA, an extended version of standard RIA, Rissi and Sager show how procedural assessments used to be the most prominent form of RIA utilization in Switzerland. RIA are often outsourced to independent research companies, though this does not affect utilization. In the course of the debate about the Federal Audit Office report on the quality of RIA, an independent Regulation Assessment Unit was demanded by some politicians. However, the proposal is yet to be made concrete.
Rissi Christof and Fritz Sager (2013). “Types of Knowledge Utilization of Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA). Evidence from Swiss Policymaking,” Regulation & Governance 7(3): 348–364.
RIAs must be attached to every legislative proposal. The publication of draft laws for public assessment (while previous publication is legally required in many cases, in practice virtually all draft laws are published before they are voted upon) allows stakeholders within the public to comment, a frequent occurrence. Trade unions and economic chambers in particular, but other institutions as well are regularly invited to provide comment on draft laws.

However, RIAs are not written by sectoral experts, but rather by the ministry or department preparing the draft law. As a result, expertise may in some cases be limited to the sectoral expertise of the body preparing the draft law. Currently, there is no independent body that evaluates RIA quality.

After less than one year in power, nothing can be said regarding any significant changes introduced by the new ÖVP-FPÖ coalition. But it must be concluded that the chancellor’s system of “message control” reduces the autonomy of government ministers and ministries to formulate policies without the consent of the chancellor and his deputy.
The quality of regulatory impact assessment in Canada is satisfactory. Stakeholder participation in the past has been encouraged, although recent changes in environmental legislation have put limits on such participation. RIA results are accessible under Freedom of Information provisions. However, there is little evaluation of the quality of RIA by independent bodies.
Given the partly informal and non-institutionalized character of instruments used for regulatory impact assessments, reports do not necessarily specify the purpose of and the need for a regulation. Furthermore, they do not tend to analyze alternative options. Depending on the topic, stakeholders may play a certain role in the RIA process, but this does not entail a high degree of relevance within the political process over the middle or long term. As stated in Regulatory Impact Assessment published by the OECD in 2017, there is no standardized practice on how to conduct regulatory consultation, including its length, scope, timing and underlying procedures. RIA assessments are not routinely evaluated by independent bodies.
OECD (2016), Regulatory Policy in Chile: Government Capacity to Ensure High-Quality Regulation, OECD
Reviews of Regulatory Reform, OECD Publishing, Paris.

OECD (2017), Reviews of Regulatory Reform
Evaluation Report: Regulatory Impact
Assessment (Chile)
South Korea
The Regulatory Reform Committee (RRC) is the primary institution overseeing the RIA process. Stakeholders are consulted during the RIA process, which includes regular meetings with foreign chambers of commerce, for example. The general public and specific stakeholders can be integrated into the process via online channels such as the Regulatory Information Portal, Regulatory Reform Sinmungo, and the e-Legislation Center (www.lawmaking.go.kr). The e-Legislation Center gives the general public the opportunity to propose a bill, submit opinions on regulatory bills or request a clarification of how laws have been interpreted. However, RIA committees are often criticized for not being fully autonomous and for being influenced by political and economic interests. Other criticisms mentioned by the OECD include a lack of time to carry out assessments, insufficient staff, and a lack of expertise and financial resources. The OECD also recommends that the scope of civil society participation in the RRC be widened, and that the committee’s steering capacity be strengthened rather than allowing it to micromanage RIA processes.
OECD, 2017. OECD Reviews of Regulatory Reform Regulatory Policy in Korea: Toward Better Regulation. May 23, 2017.
OECD Regulatory Policy Outlook 2018, https://read.oecd-ilibrary.org/governance/oecd-regulatory-policy-outlook-2018_97 89264303072-en#page208
Regulatory impact assessment is a highly political process, with a strong tendency for results to reflect the preferences and expectations of the agency or political official that controls the process.. A 2011 study of regulatory impact assessments by the George W. Bush and Obama administrations demonstrated the biasing effect of political priorities. The Obama administration has issued new rules at a rate 40% higher than either Clinton or Bush. While Obama’s regulators reported costs triple those of Bush’s, they report benefits eight times higher.

Trump administration regulatory officials have had little concern about impact assessment. In canceling the Obama era’s “net neutrality” regulations, the Federal Communications Commission relied on a large volume of citizen messages that it had already determined were produced by internet bots, rather than actual people.
The RIA process displays deficiencies with regard to two of the three objectives.
The preparation of a RIS follows a standard procedure in which policymakers gather the information that will enable them to evaluate the extent to which the proposed regulatory changes will result in a net benefit to the community. The office of best practice regulation within the Department of Finance and Deregulation, which administers both the federal government and the COAG regulation requirements, seeks a range of information about any new regulation. The level of information required is commensurate with the magnitude of the problem that is being addressed, and the size of the potential impact of the proposal. The office of best practice regulation uses a number of “adequacy criteria” to assess whether a RIS contains the appropriate levels of information and analysis.

In 2012, the Productivity Commission, at the request of the Australian government, produced a report assessing the performance of jurisdictions’ regulatory impact analysis processes, including those at the level of the COAG, and identifying best practices. Findings of major concern from the report include the following: a number of proposals with highly significant impacts were either exempted from RIA processes or were not rigorously analyzed; public consultation on policy development was often perfunctory or occurred only after development of draft legislation; and public transparency – that is, informing stakeholders about revisions to policy proposals and providing information used in decision-making, or providing reasons for not subjecting proposals to impact analysis – was a glaring weakness in most Australian RIA processes. Furthermore, a major problem in implementing RIA requirements was that the policy decisions often occurred prior to commencement of the RIA process. However, the commission concluded that the regulatory impact analysis process was worth retaining despite unclear benefits.
Productivity Commission, ‘Regulatory Impact Analysis: Benchmarking,’ Research Report, November 2012: http://www.pc.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0003/120675/ria-benchmarking.pdf


With the exception of the assessment of budgetary and environmental impacts of proposed legislation, so far RIA has had a largely formalized nature in Bulgaria. Once a proposed draft has entered the phase of public consultation, civil society and academic actors are able to offer their own assessments, which then become a part of the documentation accompanying the proposal and are available to the public online. Formalism in impact assessments continues, even though the legal framework for impact assessments was reformed in 2016. With respect to acts proposed by the Council of Ministers, there has been visible improvement of late, with more than 410 assessments encompassing all normative proposals of the executive branch. In 2018, the Institute for Public Administration published a RIA methodology, which is expected to unify standards, and make assessments by different ministries more consistent and transparent.
Administration of the Council of Ministers (2018): Impact assessment: annual report for 2017 (in Bulgarian). Sofia (http://strategy.bg/FileHandler.ashx?fileId=13942).

Institute for Public Administration (2018): Methodology for ex-ante impact assessment of normative acts and programs (in Bulgarian). Sofia (https://www.ipa.government.bg/sites/default/files/metodika_korektura_all.pdf).
A 2017 report on the implementation of the present system makes proposals to address various issues and improve the whole RIA process. These include the need for transparency, more systematic consultation, improved involvement of stakeholders and enhanced analysis of SMEs. Offering public access to submitted RIA documents and submitting the system to an independent evaluation remain mere proposals. Given that the better regulation project is in a transitional stage, with tasks assigned back to ministries, there are no updates available for 2018.
Legal regulations established by governmental decree (2012) require involvement by relevant interest groups and public consultations in the lawmaking process. It must be formally documented which interest groups have been involved, what their proposals have been and to what extent the proposals have been taken into account. All this information is publicly available in the explanatory paper accompanying the draft law. Alongside these formal requirements, involving stakeholders and hearing their opinions has become a common practice. However, stakeholder involvement needs to be improved. RIA analyses are not communicated to the public, and only those partners closely participating in the process are sufficiently informed. RIA results are not subject to regular evaluations by an independent body, and far more stress is put on the further elaboration of impact-assessment methods than on making use of results to create better policies.
The regulations on cabinet procedures (Reglur um starfshætti ríkisstjórnar) from 2016, including paragraph 13 about impact assessments of cabinet bills, partly ensure participation. The methodology for these impact assessments was approved by the cabinet of Benediktsson (January 2017 – September 2017) in March 2017. Stakeholders, other ministries, and the public shall be informed during the process, which is an important step toward transparency.
Reglur um starfshætti ríkisstjórnar. Nr. 292/2016 18. mars 2016.

SAMÞYKKT RÍKISSTJÓRNARINNAR um undirbúning og frágang stjórnarfrumvarpa og stjórnartillagna, sbr. 9. gr. reglna um starfshætti ríkisstjórnar. 10 mars 2017.
https://www.stjornarradid.is/media/forsaetisraduneyti-media/media/frettir2/Sam thykkt-rikisstjornar-um-stjornarskjol-10-mars-2017.pdf. Accessed 22 December 2018.
The process of regulatory impact assessment does not ensure sufficient participation by relevant stakeholders. According to the OECD, external stakeholders in Lithuania do not see impact assessment as a useful tool, because it provides little room for their feedback or contributions. Although four institutions are tasked with overseeing the quality of impact assessment, the quality of impact assessments is not in fact systematically monitored. Therefore, draft government legislation is checked primarily for legality, with little attention paid to the possible impact of the proposed legislation. Though RIA results are available for decision-making, they are rarely debated or otherwise used in the policy process. The principle of proportionality is not applied as major political initiatives are raised without proper impact assessments.

The OECD has issued several recommendations for improving the RIA process, including strengthening quality-oversight monitoring, consolidating oversight of the quality of impact assessment in a single lead institution (the Government Office) and ensuring that stakeholders are consulted in the early phases of the RIA process. In response, the Government Office has reviewed regulation policy, strengthened central coordination capacities and proposed improvements to the RIA process.
OECD, Regulatory Policy in Lithuania: Focusing on the Delivery Side, OECD Reviews of Regulatory Reform, OECD Publishing, Paris, 2015 http://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/governance/regulatory-policy-in-lithuania_9789264239340-en.
Romanian law stipulates that RIAs, along with proposed regulations, must be published for at least 30 days on the ministerial websites, and this obligation is usually respected. Only a select few stakeholers are regularly involved in the RIA process. Public consultations are largely online (which is problematic given unequal internet access within the country) with a short time-frame for input, while in-person consultations tend to be informal and, as a result, risk being subject to regulatory capture. Other ministries are not systematically involved in the RIA process. While the RIA process as a whole has been reviewed by the OECD as well as the World Bank, there are no regular independent quality evaluations of individual RIA assessments.
Procedures for public consultations in the later stage of the regulation-making process are well developed, and include the automatic publication of all legislative documents on the government portal. However, the strong focus of Slovak RIA on the impact on the business sector means that business associations are involved in the process more strongly than other stakeholders. Quality control suffers from fragmentation. In the Permanent Working Committee of the Legislative Council, four ministries are involved in checking the quality of regulatory impact assessments (Ministry of Economy, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Environment, Ministry of Labor, Social Affairs and Family), with the Economic Analysis Division of the Ministry of Economy playing a coordinating role.
In Croatia, there is no independent body that evaluates RIA assessments on a regular basis. However, stable partnerships with representatives of the business community (Croatian Chamber of Commerce, Croatian Employers Association, Croatian Chamber of Crafts, Croatian Banking Association), some civil society organizations (Croatian Law Center, Croatian Youth Network, Forum for Quality Foster Care, Croatian Business Council for Sustainable Development) and unions (Trade Union of Textile, Footwear, Leather and Rubber Industry) provide for the involvement of stakeholders. The openness of the RIA process and the transparency of RIA results differ among ministries. Some ministries have opened the entire RIA process to the public, asking stakeholders for feedback to their bill drafts. Other ministries ignore the importance of getting feedback from the public, thereby undermining the effectiveness of the whole RIA project. The public itself does not seem to be very interested in the RIA process. It often questions its necessity and mocks it.
Studies analyzing the impact of RIA have stated that, although the initial skepticism of administrative bodies toward RIA has been overcome, the content of assessments has been too general and often tended to justify the need for action rather than attempt a critical, well-grounded, assessment. In addition, there are few international comparisons when examining possible alternatives. The assessments are conducted by stakeholders with a perspective of fighting for or against a policy measure. Thus, in general, such assessments have little to recommend them. It remains to be seen if the recommendations for conducting independent assessment by the think tank France Stratégie will be followed. A more thorough analysis (“étude d’impact”) is done in case of large public investments (train tracks, highways, airports etc.) and the final decision as well as the process is submitted to judicial control. Too often the experts in charge of evaluating are chosen ad personam and in a discretionary fashion. The hidden purpose and expectations are that their assessment will be in line with the preferences of the politicians in charge. A comparative study of RIA practices over the last 20 years confirms France’s rather poor ranking, and suggests this is attributable to the lack of a RIA culture, insufficient training for administrative elites, a lack of political will and the feeble role of parliament in RIA matters.
France Stratégie: Comment evaluer l’impact des politiques publiques? Document de travail, 16 September 2016
France Stratégie: Vingt ans d’évaluations d’impact en France et en étranger. Analyse quantitative de la production scientifique, Paris, December 2018 (https://www.strategie.gouv.fr/sites/strategie.gouv.fr/files/atoms/files/fs-dt-impact-politiques-publiques-decembre-2018.pdf)
The accessibility and communication of the RIAs that have been performed are poor and independent quality evaluations are not conducted. RIAs have been required since 2005 for issues that involve changes to the regulatory framework.

The shortcomings and problems that have arisen with regard to the launch of Irish Water illustrate a failure to create transparency and enable participation in the assessment of at least this important project.
Israel has recently improved its stakeholder engagement in the regulatory process. In 2017, an OECD report stated that Israel needed to improve its stakeholder engagement processes. However, in 2018, the OECD Regulatory Report Outlook ranked Israel one of the top four countries with regards to regulatory improvements, with a particularly substantial improvement in public and stakeholder participation and collaboration in RIAs.

In the last two years, most of the RIAs provided an opportunity to the public and other stakeholders to participate in the regulatory process. In addition, RIA reports were published following the conclusion of the process, ensuring transparency. The government also initiated a new group, comprising the Israeli Democracy Institute (IDI) and public sector officials, which aims to improve the quality of regulation and better achieve regulatory policies on the basis of transparent criteria.
“Improving regulation in Israel and easing the burden of bureaucracy Proposal for a multi-year program“, Israeli Democracy Institute (Hebrew):

“OECD Regulatory Policy Outlook 2018“, OECD WEBSITE, 2018:

RIA Report data, Government Regulation Website, 2018 (Hebrew): http://regulation.gov.il/RIA_REP
Malta’s policy on regulatory impact assessments (RIA) is evolving. In some areas, the process of consultation is superficial, based mostly on public reaction to published consultation papers or a dedicated government website created for the purpose. In others it is more sophisticated. Previously, consultation prior to implementation was commonly extensive when regulations dealt with economic or labor issues; this practice has now increasingly been extended to social issues. The government has thus increased its consultation frequency and expanded its dissemination of information; nonetheless, in small states such as Malta, truly “independent” bodies are generally absent or rare. Furthermore, civil society groups must become more proactive if they are to help shape policies during the formulation stage.

Consultation activities have been codified to support environmental impact assessments. Guidelines initially allowed for an open, transparent and inclusive consultation process. However, in April 2016, the Planning Authority was separated from the Environmental Authority, a reform that may have confused this process. Critics have also charged that consultation sometimes involves only selected interest groups.
http://www.mcesd.org.mt/mcesd/conte nt.aspx?id=101553
OECD (2007), “Regulatory Management Capacities of Member States of the EU that Joined the Union on 1 May
2004: Sustaining Regulatory Management Improvements through a Better Regulation Policy,” Sigma Papers, No. 42, OECD Publishing.
https://gov.mt/en/Go vernment/Public%20Consultations/Pag es/Public-Consultations.aspx
Hospital development impact assessment waiver may breach EU law Times of Malta 26/08/2015
More development to be included in planning process, Times of Malta 19/04/2016
A Master Plan in Reverse Times of Malta 10/10/2016
RIA analyses in Spain are quite new (see “RIA Application”), and their use to date has largely been focused on administrative simplification and better-regulation programs. The gradual introduction of RIAs since 2009 has resulted in a general template (reinforced since 2016 by the law on the common administrative procedure), which is to be applied across content areas. This emphasizes that draft legislation must address economic and budgetary considerations as well as any other relevant aspects of impact such as environmental impact, gender-equality concerns, and any possible effects on disabled people.

This process has not been very successful in eliciting participation by stakeholders (through consultation or collaboration, transparent communication of results to the public, or the effective and regular evaluation of assessments by an independent body). In some instances, RIA procedures have been efficiently used; in others, it seems to have been merely a formal requirement fulfilled by the department preparing the bill. Since 2017, the Institute for the Evaluation of Public Policies, a part of the Ministry of Territorial Policy and Civil Service, has been in charge of evaluating the public polices produced by ministries and at the various administrative levels. However, reinforcing the degree to which this institute cooperates with other agencies (e.g., the Office for the Execution of Administrative Reform, or the Independent Fiscal Accountability Authority) would increase the impact of its short-term and long-term evaluations.
Círculo de Empresarios (2018), La calidad de las instituciones en España. https://circulodeempresarios.org/app/uploads/2018/04/Calidad-insti-CdE-WEB.pdf
The RIA process is still in its infancy in Italy. The participation of stakeholders remains limited and is not systematically pursued. The annual reports, which are presented by the Prime Minister’s Office to parliament, indicate a gradual improvement in this field. Communication to the public needs also to be significantly improved. The impact of RIAs on the policymaking process is still insufficient.
RIA analyses do not exist or the RIA process fails to achieve any of the three objectives of process quality.
Regulatory impact assessments are compulsory, but seem to be treated as a formality for many important government decisions. There are however interesting and valuable exceptions, such as for the possibility of adding a fourth mobile phone operator in Belgium.
Law 4048/2012 established the RIA framework. According to Article 7 “every bill, addition or amendment and every normative decision of major economic or social importance shall by accompanied by an impact assessment.” However, no RIA was undertaken since the law was passed.
OECD Competition Assessment Reviews: Greece, 2014.
The quality of the RIA process in Hungary has been poor. Stakeholder participation is usually lacking, since the very idea of consultation has been alien to the Orbán governments. RIA performance has rarely or only partially been made available to political actors on the special website for RIA (hatasvizsgalat.kormany.hu).
An open and consultative regulatory impact assessment (RIA) process does not exist. The procedure requires an interministerial exchange between governmental departments and coordination groups, including a consultation of experts. Impact assessment data originates from internal ministry documents, which may be consulted by the state Council of Ministers and parliamentary members.

Due to administrative simplification efforts in recent years, the government has decided to run two public platforms, www.einfach.lu and www.vosidees.lu, offering all necessary information and details on the impact of ongoing reform programs. As in most OECD countries, there is no risk management in the formal process of developing harmonized standards. RIAs are not evaluated by an independent body.

Since the general introduction of RIAs in 2009, there has been progress in transparency and civil society participation. Nevertheless, efforts should be made to further increase the involvement of stakeholders.
Building an Institutional Framework for Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA): Guidance for Policy Makers. OECD, 2008. www.oecd.org/regreform/regulatory-policy/40984990.pdf. Accessed 23 Oct. 2018.

Simplification administrative – Einfach. https://fonction-publique.public.lu/fr/principes-valeurs/einfach.html. Accessed 23 Oct. 2018.
The quality of the RIA process has strongly declined under the PiS government. Legally, stakeholders are required to be involved, and results must be publicized and communicated; however, such efforts have become rather selective. No independent body reviews the quality of individual RIAs.
As noted above, systematic RIA does not exist in Portugal. Stakeholder consultation does generally take place, albeit inconsistently and without full participation by all relevant stakeholders. Indeed, regarding the “Quanto Custa?” trial, the OECD remarked on the need for greater stakeholder involvement. Impact-assessment results are not generally made publicly available or systematically communicated. There are no evaluations of impact-assessment quality rendered by independent bodies.
UTAIL – Unidade Técnica de Avaliação de Impacto Legislativo (2018), “Relatório de actividade – Ano de 2017: projeto-piloto da medida “Custa Quanto?,” available online at: https://www.jurisapp.gov.pt/media/1019/30012017-utail-relatorio-atividades.pdf
The RIA process in Slovenia suffers from several weaknesses. First, public participation often fails to meet the legal standards. Second, the conducted RIAs are rarely made public, if ever. Third, quality control is limited. RIA oversight is divided among several agencies; however, supervising agencies largely check for formal and legal correctness, without addressing substantive quality.
During the period under review, the regulatory impact assessment (RIAs) requirement did not help improve the quality of proposed government legislation. Instead, the government more often than not drafted and adopted legislation without the appropriate consultation of NGOs or other stakeholders; not to mention the government’s de facto surpassing of the parliament under its state of emergency powers.
According to the Regulation on the Procedures and Principles of Legislation (2006), a full RIA is required for legislation that would have result in costs exceeding TRY 30 million (about €5 million) and a partial RIA is required for legislation that would result in costs lower than this amount.
Mevzuat Hazırlama Usul ve Esasları Hakkında Yönetmelik, http://www.mevzuat.gov.tr/Metin.Aspx?MevzuatKod=3.5.20059986&MevzuatIliski=0&sourceXmlSearch= (accessed 27 October 2018)
Murat Önder, “Mevzuat Yapımında Düzenleyici Etki Analizi ve Uygulama Sorunları,” Türk İdare Dergisi, 89 (485) 2017: 771-810.
Sibel Güven, Türkiye’de Düzenleyici Etki Analizi (DEA) Uygulamaları Nedenİstenen Düzeyde Değil? TEPAV, Ankara, Ocak 2011.
Technical Assistance Service for IPPC – Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control in Turkey, Draft Regulatory Impact Assessment, June 2013, http://www.csb.gov.tr/db/ippceng/webmenu/webmenu9986.pdf (accessed 5 November 2014).
Zararlı Kimyasalların İhracatı ve İthalatına İlişkin AB Tüzüğü’nün Uygulanması için Teknik Destek Projesi, http://kosano.org.tr/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/ankt.pdf (accessed 1 November 2017)
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