Rousseau & Billiet, 2008

Sandra Rousseau & Carole M. Billiet, Rechtseconomische analyse van de handhavingsnood in het milieubeleid [A Law and Economics analysis of the enforcement deficit in environmental policy], Review of Business and Economics 2008, 188-212

In this interdisciplinary analysis, emphasis is on the basic model of environmental law enforcement from a Law and economics point of view. The authors investigate why certain industries breach environmental regulations and which factors influence their decision to do so. The basic model shows that the social benefits of enforcement are greatest where marginal costs equal marginal benefits. This means that optimal enforcement does not by definition equal maximum enforcement. This view is fairly easy to convey in a theoretical model. However, it is far more difficult to determine the optimal enforcement policy and to formulate guidelines for real applications in the field. Nevertheless, by keeping in mind a few simple legislative recommendations, the legislator can clearly make a substantial difference to an enforcement policy that is capable of being socially cost-effective.

Full publication (Dutch) here.