Last Wednesday, I spent a very enjoyable afternoon here with a group of my colleagues from the Law School. Sat around the table were several lawyers with expertise in different fields, an economist, some criminologists and a handful of socio-legal scholars. We were gathered to talk about a new research initiative – ManReg: The Manchester Centre for Regulation, Governance & Security.
You might wonder what such a diverse bunch of people could possibly have in common. What, for instance, would an environmental lawyer, a policing scholar and an intellectual property lawyer have to talk about? The basic premise of ManReg is that in fact, despite our widely differing expertise, our group actually shares some important things in common:
- a concern with how rules and standards are made and developed;
- an interest in understanding why rules and standards are followed or breached by different individuals, groups or institutions;
- a focus on how different approaches to enforcement and compliance can vary significantly in effectiveness.
This common ground – the making, breaking and enforcement of rules and standards – is core territory for regulation scholars and it is under the sign of regulation that we have come together to form ManReg. We believe that our multi-disciplinarity and diversity will be one of our key strengths.
We hope to have a ManReg website up and running in the next few weeks, where you’ll be able to find out more about who we are, what we do and what our plans for the future are. Watch this space for details! In the meantime, if you want to make contact, please leave a comment below or, alternatively, email one of ManReg’s Co-Directors, Andrew Griffiths or David Williamson.