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Bureaucracy in a Network and Congressional Delegation

  • Author(s): Lee, Jongkon
  • Advisor(s): Gailmard, Sean
  • Ansell, Christopher
  • et al.
Abstract

If there is no expert but bureaucracy in a policy area, expertise may be sufficient for an agency to acquire its discretion. However, it is hard for an agency as an expert to have monopolistic status in any policy area, due to the growth of interest groups. Delegation in recent decades depends not only on its expertise, but also on the other bureaucratic capability to affect the behaviors of the outside experts. Even the most expert agencies cannot maintain their discretionary authorities without sufficient political capacities to affect the behaviors of interest groups. In particular, "brokerage capacity" that allows agencies to link interest groups and to resolve their interest conflicts, has become important in bureaucratic discretion. By mediating conflicts of interest and minimizing unnecessary contingencies, agencies are able to reduce interest groups' incentives to provide information to the legislature, thereby indirectly affecting legislators' decisions on delegation and oversight.

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