Dr Julien Etienne

ESRC Postdoctoral fellow

Tel: 020 7955 6349
Fax: 020 7955 6578
Email: j.etienne@lse.ac.uk|

Research interests

  • Regulatory compliance
  • Compliance theory
  • Trust and control in regulatory encounters
  • Self-reporting of bad news by regulatees to regulators
  • Major accident hazards
  • Organizational reliability

Selected publications

  • Etienne, J. (2010) 'Compliance Theories: a Review of the Literature', Revue Française de Science Politique, 60 (3) pp.493-518 (in French).
  • Etienne, J. (2010) 'The Impact of Regulatory Policy on Individual Behaviour: a Goal Framing Theory Approach', Discussion Paper 59, ESRC Centre for Analysis of Risk and Regulation.
  • Dupré, M., Etienne, J., Le Coze, J.-C. (2009) 'L'interaction régulateur régulé: considérations à partir du cas d'une enterprise Seveso II seuil haut ', Annales des Mines: Gérer et Comprendre, Septembre, 97 pp.16-27.
  • Etienne, J. (2008) 'Knowledge Transfer in Organizational Reliability Analysis: From Post-Accident Studies to Normal Operations Studies', Safety Science, 46 (10) pp.1420-34.
  • Etienne, J. (2007) 'Reorganizing Public Oversight of High-Risk Industries in France: A Reliability Analysis of Permitting', Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management, 15 (3) pp.144-156.


Review of evidence on enforcement, compliance and risk for the Food Standards Agency

Co-funded by the Food Standards Agency and the Economic and Social Research Council, 2014-2015 (one year)

This project will provide an assessment of the evidence on effective enforcement and the facilitation of compliance. Through the identification of gaps and weaknesses in the evidence currently available, it will contribute to developing a research programme to inform the Food Standard Agency’s intervention strategy.

In order to elaborate a coherent programme rather than produce piecemeal advice, the project will take inspiration from approaches that look at regulation as a ‘policy mix’ of tools and strategies. Such a perspective has the advantage of considering various elements of a regulatory regime together, and to thus interrogate how they complement or rather contradict one another. Considering regulation as a policy mix has also the advantage of making explicit the question of how that policy mix can be improved, notably to address changes in the regulated environment. That is of particular relevance for the implementation of food law in the UK, which is experiencing significant changes and challenges: resources to deliver inspection programmes have been drastically reduced; food fraud is becoming a major issue that makes intelligence a crucial resource for enforcement; new tools involving disclosure of business performance to the public are transforming the production of compliance at the intersection between enforcement agents, businesses, and consumers.

Self-reporting bad news to the regulator: explaining compliance with incident disclosure rules

Funded by the British Academy, 2010-2013

In hazardous organisations, incidents ("near misses") sometimes signal a serious problem that the organisation might not be able to prevent or clearly identify. Therefore, external reporting of incidents is a regulatory obligation for private organisations in numerous domains. 

However, incident disclosure is not an obligation fully complied with in numerous settings and the underpinnings of disclosure or non-disclosure remain unverified. The main goal of this project was to understand decisions to report, partially report, or not report at all incidents, by hazardous organisations, to public regulators. 

The project has explored in particular how incident reporting was shaped by regulator-regulatee relationships, bureaucratic politics, and industrial relations.

Main outputs:

Etienne J. (forthcoming) Different ways of blowing the whistle: explaining variation in decentralized enforcement in the UK and France. Regulation & Governance
Etienne, J. (2014) The politics of detection in business regulation|. Journal of Public Administration Research & Theory, doi:10.1093/jopart/muu018
Etienne, J. (2014, forthcoming) ‘Les incidents industriels : un enjeu de réputation pour la chimie et l’administration publique françaises’, in Dupré M and Le Coze JC (eds), Réactions à risques. Regards croisés sur la sécurité dans la chimie, pp. 169-84, Lavoisier, Paris.
Etienne, J. (2013) ‘Ambiguity and Relational Signals in Regulator-Regulatee Relationships’|, Regulation & Governance, 7(1): 30-47.
Etienne, J. (2013) ‘Whistleblowing in the UK - in part, it really is about culture’. OpenDemocracy.net, 4 March 2013.
Etienne, J. (2012) Book Review: Coming Clean: Information Disclosure and Environmental Performance|, by Michael E. Kraft, Mark Stephan, and Troy D. Abel, Governance, 25(3): 517-520.
Etienne, J. (2010) 'Self-Reporting Untoward Events to External Controllers: Accounting for Reporting Failure by a Top Tier Chemical Plant', Discussion Paper 66, Centre for Analysis of Risk and Regulation.

News items

  • Presented a paper entitled 'Compliance Theory: a Goal Framing Approach' at the ECPR Regulation and Governance conference in Dublin on 17-19 June.
  • Gave a presentation on 'The Dilemmas of Risk Regulation' at the University of Geneva, Switzerland on 31 March, 2010, in the framework of the Department of Sociology's programme of public conferences.
  • Gave a presentation on the topic of industrial risk and regulatory encounters at a workshop on 'The Government of the Environment', University of Picardie Jules Verne, Amiens, France, on 29 January, 2010.