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Columbia Law School

International Law

Analysis of legal institutions

2002

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Incomplete Law – A Conceptual And Analytical Framework And Its Application To The Evolution Of Financial Market Regulation, Katharina Pistor, Chenggang Xu Jan 2002

Incomplete Law – A Conceptual And Analytical Framework And Its Application To The Evolution Of Financial Market Regulation, Katharina Pistor, Chenggang Xu

Faculty Scholarship

This paper develops a conceptual framework for the analysis of legal institutions. It argues that law is inherently incomplete and that the incompleteness of law has a profound impact on the design of lawmaking and law enforcement institutions. When law is incomplete, residual lawmaking powers must be allocated; and enforcement agents have to be vested with law enforcement powers. The optimal allocation of lawmaking and law enforcement powers under incomplete law is analyzed with a focus on the legislature, regulators and courts as possible lawmakers, and courts as well as regulators as possible law enforcers. The timing and process of ...