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The Politics of Precaution: Regulating Health, Safety, and Environmental Risks in Europe and the United States

David Vogel

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ISBN 10: 0691163367 / ISBN 13: 9780691163369
Published by Princeton University Press, 2015
New Condition: New Soft cover
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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Politics of Precaution: Regulating ...

Publisher: Princeton University Press

Publication Date: 2015

Binding: Paperback

Book Condition: New

Edition: Reprint.

About this title

Synopsis:

The Politics of Precaution examines the politics of consumer and environmental risk regulation in the United States and Europe over the last five decades, explaining why America and Europe have often regulated a wide range of similar risks differently. It finds that between 1960 and 1990, American health, safety, and environmental regulations were more stringent, risk averse, comprehensive, and innovative than those adopted in Europe. But since around 1990, the book shows, global regulatory leadership has shifted to Europe. What explains this striking reversal?


David Vogel takes an in-depth, comparative look at European and American policies toward a range of consumer and environmental risks, including vehicle air pollution, ozone depletion, climate change, beef and milk hormones, genetically modified agriculture, antibiotics in animal feed, pesticides, cosmetic safety, and hazardous substances in electronic products. He traces how concerns over such risks--and pressure on political leaders to do something about them--have risen among the European public but declined among Americans. Vogel explores how policymakers in Europe have grown supportive of more stringent regulations while those in the United States have become sharply polarized along partisan lines. And as European policymakers have grown more willing to regulate risks on precautionary grounds, increasingly skeptical American policymakers have called for higher levels of scientific certainty before imposing additional regulatory controls on business.

From the Back Cover:

"This is comparative politics at its very best. Vogel takes the reader on a fascinating transatlantic journey to show how and why regulatory leadership shifts with political pressures, elite preferences, and new views on risk management. His book should be required reading for everyone concerned about the safety of man and environment."--Lennart J. Lundqvist, University of Gothenburg, Sweden

"Written by an eminent and eloquent scholar in the field, The Politics of Precaution addresses a major issue in risk regulation and transatlantic relations. The book's central claim is that there has been an overall shift from greater American to greater European relative precaution and stringency in risk regulation. Whether one agrees with that claim or not, one must contend with Vogel's argument."--Jonathan B. Wiener, Duke University and coeditor of The Reality of Precaution: Comparing Risk Regulation in the United States and Europe

"The Politics of Precaution challenges some commonly held views about the political economy of regulation. The book will serve as a useful counter to those given to easy assumptions about the differences in how Europeans and Americans regulate similar consumer and environmental risks."--Keith Hawkins, professor emeritus of law and society, University of Oxford

"The Politics of Precaution addresses an intriguing transatlantic topic, contains a wealth of interesting case studies, and is written by a seasoned and perceptive scholar. It is a serious contribution to the literature."--John D. Graham, Indiana University

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