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Oren Bar-Gill & Cass R. Sunstein, Regulation as Delegation, 7 J. Legal Analysis 1 (2015).

Abstract: In diverse areas—from retirement savings, to fuel economy, to prescription drugs, to consumer credit, to food and beverage consumption—government makes personal decisions for us or helps us make what it sees as better decisions. In other words, government serves as our agent. Understood in light of Principal-Agent Theory and Behavioral Principal-Agent Theory, a great deal of modern regulation can be helpfully evaluated as a hypothetical delegation. Shifting from personal decisions to public goods problems, we introduce the idea of reverse delegation, with the government as principal and the individuals as agents.