Excellence in Professional Regulation
The Excellence in Professional Regulation pilot program is building capability and supporting the professional development of Australian Government regulators.
We live in a regulated world. Whether you're aware of it or not, society is dependent upon regulations to make sure we can go about our lives safely and effectively. Let's take an ordinary activity like your weekly grocery shop as an example. To get to the grocery store, you get in your car. Your car has to comply with safety regulations such as seatbelts and airbags to keep you safe.
It also has to conform to environmental regulations to limit air pollution. The fuel in your tank has to comply with regulations on chemical content and performance, and the price of that fuel has to conform to competition regulations. All of these regulations and you haven't even started the car yet. On the way to the shops, you have to comply with road regulations like driving on the left hand side and stopping at red lights.
The location of the supermarket has to comply to planning regulations, and so does the parking lot. Even the price you pay for parking is based on local government regulations. The supermarket building itself has to comply with a range of building regulations things like engineering standards, building heights, plumbing. All the fresh produce you buy conforms to food safety regulations such as pesticide and bacteria limits.
Milk and meat have to conform to specific food safety regulations, too. Some items have specific requirements about the ingredients they contain. All items for human consumption have to conform to labelling regulations that target the ingredient and nutritional profiles. Any ingredients sourced internationally have to comply with import regulations and biosecurity laws, and the transport used to get these items on the shelves are subject to safety regulations.
Your checkout operator is governed by various employment regulations, including superannuation and minimum rates of pay. Paying for your groceries on card is also governed by financial regulations, including a limit on credit card surcharge amounts. Even the bags you use to carry your groceries are regulated and in some places only reusable bags are available. An ordinary activity like your weekly grocery shop only begins to scrape the surface of the way in which we encounter regulations every day.
It is woven into the function and fabric of our society. We live in a regulated world.
This program is part of the Australian Government’s work to lift regulator performance, capability and culture by supporting the professional development of Government regulators. Lifting capability of regulatory staff, and establishment of ongoing upskilling and learning programs across government, will drive best practice performance and better regulatory outcomes.
The Australian Public Service Commission (APSC) is working to deliver the Excellence in Professional Regulation training pilot program in partnership with the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF) and the Department of Finance (Finance).
The APSC, Finance and DAFF are coordinating efforts to ensure the pilot draws on existing regulatory capability and the Government’s refreshed expectations of regulators, and builds skills across all Australian Government regulators. The pilot is developing and delivering learning programs over 3 years, with the first rollout commencing in May 2021. All solutions will be made available to APS regulators gradually throughout 2022 and 2023.
The Excellence in Professional Regulation pilot program is developing and delivering learning programs across three streams:
- Regulatory Practice Essentials provides regulatory staff with the essential skills, knowledge and tools to be an effective regulatory practitioner.
- Mastering Regulatory Practice supports promising regulatory practitioners in their career to build overall capability and identify opportunities for professional recognition.
- Leading a Regulatory System supports senior executives in shaping regulatory organisations and culture.
The learning programs will also support implementation of the Government’s new Regulator Performance Guide.
Practitioner (Mastery) level
The APS Academy is working to advance solutions in this stream.
How can I get involved?
Contact the Regulatory Capability inbox for more information about the pilot program.
Professional Regulation Resource List
The Australian Government released refreshed expectations for regulator performance and reporting that took effect from 1 July 2021.
Tools and templates
Regulators can use this checklist to review decisions to ensure they are defensible, and to support recommended decisions or regulatory actions if seeking approval.
The National Regulators Community of Practice (NRCoP) is an active network of public sector regulators from all 3 levels of government.
A 2006 academic article by Valerie Braithwaite detailing 10 ‘Should Do’ areas for consideration by regulators and regulatory bodies.
A 2021 working paper discussing aspects of regulation the author, Jeroen van der Heijden, has identified as essential understanding for public servants.
Professor Cary Coglianese on defining regulatory excellence, deploying regulatory strategies and the role of performance measurement in regulatory quality.
Professor Malcolm Sparrow demystifies various prescriptions for regulatory conduct, clarifies your options and generates usable ideas on being a ‘risk based regulator’.
This 2021 academic article aims to help understand the regulatory challenges posed by disruptive technologies and develop generalizable propositions for government responses.