Cornell e-Rulemaking Initiative Publications

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Published Papers

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An underlying assumption of many open government enthusiasts is that more public participation will necessarily lead to better government policymaking: If we use technology to give people easier opportunities to participate in public policymaking, they will use these opportunities to participate effectively. Yet, experience thus far with technology-enabled rulemaking (e-rulemaking) has not confirmed this “if-then” causal link. This Article considers how this flawed causal reasoning around technology has permeated efforts to increase public participation in rulemaking.


This is an excerpted and updated version of an article that was originally published in the Michigan Journal of Environmental and Administrative Law, vol. 2, no. 1 (Fall 2012). This version was published in: Environmental Law Reporter: News & Analysis (vol. 44, issue 8 (August 2014).