policy analysis

Think Tanks on the Auction Block

I’ve previously expressed some skeptical views about the so-called think tanks that play such a significant role in Beltrway policy debates. (See this post) The New Republic has an interesting story about the increasing dependence of think tanks on big money  Here is the crux: Nowadays if donors don’t like the results they get, they …


If Cost-Benefit Analysis is Good, Is More Cost-Benefit Analysis Always Better?

Presidential and congressional requirements for cost-benefit analysis should also recognize that
data availability may be an implementation issue, and that additional resources may be necessary
for the agencies conducting these analyses. In some cases, the data that agencies need to estimate
the costs and benefits of their rules may not exist, or may only be available from regulated
entities.128 Although there is no “typical” cost-benefit analysis (just as there is no “typical” rule),
the cost of conducting many individual regulatory analyses has been in the hundreds of thousands
of dollars.129 If more agencies are required to prepare more detailed analyses for more rules, it is
unclear how the agencies will be able to do so without more resources.130 As noted earlier in this
report, if agencies are required to prepare cost-benefit analyses for rules that are not expected to