Regulation University: Beware of Inflated Benefits and Hidden Costs

Mar 27, 2013Mar 28, 2013
Russell Senate Office Building, Room 385

Event Speakers

Patrick McLaughlin

Senior Research Fellow

Please join the Mercatus Center for Regulation University’s 2013 series. Patrick McLaughlin, Ph.D a Senior Research Fellow at Mercatus, will discuss how errors, information gaps and misapplied theory can inflate regulatory benefit estimates, and why the costs of regulation can be difficult to nail down.

Several key debates this year will focus on the economic impact of federal regulations. The Mercatus Center at George Mason University is pleased to offer Regulation University, a series of educational programs designed for congressional staff to provide the skills and information essential to regulatory oversight and to understand the legal and institutional framework that produces and supports federal regulation.

It is widely acknowledged that an agency’s decision to create a new regulation should be informed by an analysis of the regulation’s potential benefits and costs. The quality of these analyses, however, depends on the availability and appropriate use of information about potential benefits and costs.

This program will examine –


  • Factors that can inflate benefit estimates and the implications of benefit inflation to regulatory policy.
  • The reasons why certain costs of a regulation can be hidden even from those who bear that cost.


Space is limited. Please RSVP today to reserve a seat.

This event is free and open to all congressional and federal agency staff. This event is not open to the general public. Food will be provided. Due to space constraints, please no interns.

Questions? Please contact Erin Connolly, Events Coordinator, at or (703) 993-9228.