Formal/informal law & regulation discussions
Organisations have always been governed within the context of the nation state through a mix of formal law and regulation, together with informal ‘encouragement’ to adhere to emerging social norms. Policy debates are often anchored around the extent to which society can rely on these informal mechanisms, which, in turn, require effective self-regulation. This section covers the interaction between organisations, government and global institutions, setting out some of the questions that will help organisations design internal incentives and governance systems to enable self-regulation to be effective, and to identify where formal laws and/or regulatory interventions are required.
One of the consistent themes emerging from practitioners relates to the speed of change in formal-informal regulations and the growing requests from governments and institutions for organisations to help design and implement important reforms. Which stakeholder views should receive priority, and what responsibility do organisations have to secure alignment? There is also a desire for insight into how informal regulation and legal norms inform the development of more formal regulation and the law. Finally, are standardised concepts and definitions (e.g., the EU taxonomy) the right way to go, facilitating comparison and transparency, and if so, what role do organisations have in creating consensus? Issues addressed in this section therefore also include the role of public-private and civil society-NGO collaborations.