Ongoing Projects

This project explores agencies’ practices under the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998, looking at the use of acting officials and of delegations of authority during periods in which a Senate-confirmed position sits vacant. Among other things, it examines how agencies design systems for succession planning, assign appropriate titles, and communicate relevant information to the public.

This project studies agencies’ appellate review of hearing-level adjudicative decisions. Topics include the structure, composition, functions, procedures, and authority of agency appellate bodies. Resulting recommendations will focus on the ways in which agencies can enhance both the efficiency and fairness of appellate review.  

This project addresses the extent to which the best practices for policy statements adopted in Recommendation 2017-5, Agency Guidance Through Policy Statements, should extend to interpretive rules. The project examines the legal differences, if any, between policy statements and interpretive rules and...

This project explores the online accessibility, arrangement, and legal presentation of the rules that govern formal and informal agency adjudications. It studies existing laws and agency practices relevant to the online accessibility of adjudication rules and identifies best practices agencies may consider in increasing their accessibility on agency websites.

This project catalogs legal requirements governing when and where federal agency guidance documents must be published. It also offers best practices for how agencies can comply with publication requirements and make guidance documents most accessible to the public, especially by placing them on agency websites.

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This project explores agency strategies to enhance public engagement prior to and during informal rulemaking.  It seeks to ensure that agencies invest resources in a way that maximizes the probability that rulewriters obtain high quality public information as early in the process as possible.

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Federal agencies, to assist in carrying out their missions, have long participated in public-private partnerships (P3s). An interagency working group has defined “public-private partnerships” as “collaborative working relationships between the U.S.

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This project addresses whether agencies should issue procedural regulations—as distinct from the ethics laws and regulations generally applicable to all federal employees—governing the recusal of adjudicators, to what sources of law agencies should look in formulating such regulations, how such regulations should be promulgated and enforced, and related questions.

This project explores agency practices related to docket management and data quality on the Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) and Regulations.gov. It proposes changes to improve the way rulemaking materials are organized and displayed on Regulations.gov, thereby enhancing the public’s ability to participate in rulemaking in an informed manner.

This project addresses the processes and procedures agency heads should consider establishing for exercising their authority under Executive Order 13,843 (July 13, 2018) to hire administrative law judges (ALJs). Topics include the procedures governing recruitment, examination, and evaluation.