Theorizing regulatory intermediaries: The rit model

Kenneth Abbott, David Levi-Faur, Duncan Snidal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

115 Scopus citations


Regulation is typically conceived as a two-party relationship between a rule-maker or regulator (R) and a rule-taker or target (T). We set out an agenda for the study of regulation as a three- (or more) party relationship, with intermediaries (I) at the center of the analysis. Intermediaries play major and varied roles in regulation, from providing expertise and feedback to facilitating implementation, from monitoring the behavior of regulatory targets to building communities of assurance and trust. After developing the basic regulator- intermediary-target (RIT) model, we discuss important extensions and variations of the model. We then discuss the varieties of regulatory capture that may appear where intermediaries are involved.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)14-35
Number of pages22
JournalAnnals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2017


  • Capture
  • Intermediaries
  • Orchestration
  • Regulation
  • Regulatory governance
  • Rule-makers
  • Rule-takers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • General Social Sciences


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