Professor Roberta Romano of the Yale Law School spoke on her paper “Regulating in the Dark” as part of the Torys LLP Business and Law Pre-eminent Scholars Series. Romano, the Sterling Professor of Law at Yale and Director of the Yale Law School Center for the Study of Corporate Law, delivered her talk at Western Law on October 19.
In discussing her paper, Romano explained the problems that can arise when major financial legislation (such as the Sarbanes-Oxley Act or the more recent Dodd-Frank Act) is adopted hastily in response to a perceived crisis. Certain status quo biases operate to render such legislation difficult to repeal or even to amend subsequently, even when there is general agreement that change is needed.
Romano offers a two-part solution to this problem. First, she suggests that such legislation should include “sunset” provisions that would compel legislators to initiate a subsequent review. Second, she favours the use of regulatory waivers or exemptions that would encourage greater flexibility and enable limited regulatory experimentation.
Business law visitors to Western Law since 2007 have included two Nobel prize winners, a former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, and senior business law professors from the world's leading law schools, including Harvard, Yale, Stanford, UCLA, Georgetown, Chicago, Columbia, Pennsylvania, Northwestern, Oxford, Cambridge, Melbourne, and Tokyo.
“The Torys LLP Business and Law Pre-eminent Scholars Series, part of the Torys LLP Corporate and Securities Law Forum at Western Law, provides Western Law students the opportunity to engage with leading business and law scholars from around the world,” says Professor Christopher Nicholls, the series organizer. “The Torys scholars series is truly one of the finest of its kind in Canada and we are very grateful to Torys LLP for their ongoing support,” he says.