Peter Carroll

Peter Carroll is a research Professor in the Faculty of Business at the University of Tasmania. He has produced a range of books and journal articles on a wide variety of topics in policy and public administration in a career that began in the UK, moved to Fiji then to Australia. In particular, he has had an ongoing interest in the study of intergovernmental relations and regulatory reform, co-authoring ‘Microeconomic Reform and Federalism’, with Martin Painter and, with Helen Silver, Rex Deighton-Smith and Ron Walker ‘Minding the Gap – Appraising the promise performance of regulatory reform in Australia’ (ANU Press 2008). Much of his work reflects a life-long interest in the government regulation of business, especially at the international level, resulting in the book ‘Regulating International Business’ (Pearson Prentice Hall 2008), an edited work produced with Richard Eccleston. He has been a chief investigator on a number of ARC Discovery grants, one focused on the importance of policy transfer in policy making and he is currently editing a book on recent developments in policy transfer. In recent years his attention has focused on international organisations and the rapidly increasing international activities of government agencies traditionally regarded as ‘domestic’ in orientation. His most recent book (with Aynsley Kellow), ‘The OECD – A study of organisational adaptation’ (Edward Elgar 2011), is the first detailed, historical study of the OECD, which celebrates its fiftieth birthday in 2011. At present he is working on a study of Australian involvement with the UN specialised agencies, to be published by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in 2011.

Minding the Gap »

Appraising the promise and performance of regulatory reform in Australia

Authored by: Peter Carroll, Rex Deighton-Smith, Helen Silver, Chris Walker
‘Mind the Gap!’ is an almost iconic exhortation, originating in the London Underground, warning travellers to be careful when navigating the ‘gap’ between the platform and train. In this volume, Peter Carroll, Rex Deighton-Smith, Helen Silver and Chris Walker retrospectively assess the ‘gap’ — no less dynamic and perilous in a public policy context — between the promise and performance of successive waves of regulation in Australia since the 1980s. Regulatory bodies exist to exercise what might be broadly termed ‘control functions’ and, by nature, tend to be conservative both in their culture and operations. Institutional conservatism does not, of necessity, preclude the exercise of creativity and foresight, both of which are sorely required if government is to successfully meet the challenge of delivering more effective and less costly regulation. The business and policy environment is complex, the risks are great and the rewards of success and the costs of failure will be enormous. The true measure of success will be how effectively we are able to close the gap between promise and performance.