The relationships between environmental inspectors and the facility personnel at regulated firms are often presumed to be adversarial, and this assumption affects the design and implementation of environmental regulations. However, closer examination of these relationships challenges this fundamental assumption of adversarial relations in environmental policy. Interviews with 44 inspectors and regulated officials throughout Virginia found that the interactions between these two categories of actors are positive. Over 90 percent of the interviewees were positive about their interactions with one another, and inspectors and regulated officials alike indicate that they trust the other. These findings are compelling because they contest common assumptions, and, as such, they provoke debate regarding the fundamental notions concerning the interactions between regulators and the regulated on the frontlines of environmental regulation.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/michelle_pautz/19/