The Administrative Agency in an Electronic Age
Co-sponsored by the Program in Law and Public Affairs, the Center for Information Technology Policy, and the ABA Section of Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice
April 20, 2012, Convocation Room, Friend Center
The past decades’ rapid technological developments sweeping effects include transformations in how government agencies handle traditional tasks. This conference brings together leading academics and government officials to review how technological change does, might, and should affect agency rulemaking, other interactions with the public, openness, and monitoring.
The event will be of interest to academics, attorneys, government officials, and students with an interest in the interaction between governance and technology, and in good governance generally. The two afternoon panels each will earn attorneys 1.5 hours of CLE credit.
The conference is free and open to the public, however registration is required and there is a charge for those requesting CLE credit. Lunch costs $25 but is free to anyone with a Princeton ID.
9:30 – 10:15 am
Continental Breakfast & Registration
10:15 – 10:30 am
Welcome and Introductions
Federal agencies’ primary point of contact with the general public and regulated entities is now the website. With the move online complete, this is an appropriate time to take stock, to review the value of agency websites for attorneys and their clients, and to chart future developments. This panel will do so, focusing on, among other things, current efforts at the Office of Management and Budget to revise its 2004 guidelines for agency websites and a recent recommendation for reform from the Administrative Conference of the United States.
12:00 – 1:30 pm
Keynote Address: Theresa A. Pardo
"Technological Transformations and Public Value: The Case of Open Government"
The Internet allows direct public engagement with agency decisionmaking in a way never before possible. Electronic rulemaking is the dominant but not the only, and perhaps not the most important, locus for such engagement. Contrary to the expectations of many, the move online, which eliminates significant barriers to effective public participation, has not produced a significant increase in effective public participation. This panel will address what the remaining barriers are, how they might be overcome, and whether doing so is an important goal.
3:15 – 3:30 pm
Remote pollution sensors, cameras everywhere, GPS tracking devices, and similar advances enable monitoring that is ubiquitous, constant, exquisitely sensitive, and comprehensive, and the results of which can be widely and costlessly distributed. This panel will address the potentially profound consequences these developments have for regulatory activities. As monitoring becomes ever more complete and sensitive, what impacts does or should this have on substantive regulation? Do agencies regulate what they can monitor rather than monitoring what they regulate? Is it corrosive, or just effective, to crowdsource enforcement? Does the flood of monitoring information enable even greater use of information disclosure as a regulatory tool?