By Doug Peterson
President and CEO of S&P Global
Chair of the Business Roundtable Smart Regulation Committee
A well-designed regulatory framework can and should protect public health and the environment, keep Americans safe and foster a fair and competitive playing field for businesses of all sizes. At Business Roundtable, we have a simple word for this regulatory approach: smart.
At the start of the year, I became chairman of the Business Roundtable Smart Regulation Committee. As President and CEO of S&P Global, I have seen firsthand how a smart approach to regulation benefits America’s workers, supports innovation and grows the economy — a perspective I look forward to putting into action alongside other Business Roundtable CEOs.
The committee is driven by a core principle: A smart approach to regulation will usher in more innovation and productivity in America for years to come. Business Roundtable CEOs have regularly cited regulatory costs as a top cost pressure — a reality that stifles innovation, economic growth and job creation. That pressure has recently lessened, in large part due to a range of efforts by the Administration to reduce regulatory burdens, often simply through better process and coordination. But there is still work to be done to ensure our approach to regulation achieves a cleaner, fairer and more innovative America. Supporting this goal demands policies that improve the U.S. regulatory process, reduce regulatory redundancy and overlap, and accelerate and advance the permitting process for major infrastructure projects.
A smarter approach to regulation would embrace the following:
- Early engagement with stakeholders;
- Expanded use of cost-benefit analyses;
- Greater use of risk-based performance standards in place of hard and fast mandates; and
- A commitment to continuous improvement.
It is also no longer enough to focus just here at home. With businesses of all sizes competing around the world, and as technology and data increasingly transcend national boundaries, the importance of regulation adopted abroad to U.S. innovation and competitiveness has never been more apparent. Poorly coordinated and overlapping global regulation will hamper innovation in every industry, and in particular could stunt the growth of emerging technologies — crucial engines of economic opportunity and job creation. Congress and the Administration must play an increased role in addressing this growing challenge.
Business Roundtable CEOs are eager to build on past successes and be active partners in driving executive and legislative action on smart regulation both in the U.S. and globally. Taking action in 2019 is essential to ensure America’s businesses and workers can continue to innovate, compete and succeed.