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improved consultations October 3, 2013

Posted by Bradley in : consultation , trackback

Two examples of what I would like to see more of in consultations: from the EU’s crowdfunding consultation, and the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) consultation on the regulation of consumer credit. Although comments can currently be submitted to the EU crowdfunding consultation in English only the web page suggests that it will soon be possible to submit comments in German, Spanish, French, Italian, and Polish. The consultation landing page seems to be available only in English French and German, and right now it seems that the consultation document is only available in English. So there is some improvement in terms of openness to comments from people who don’t write English (who presumably will rely on online sources and newspapers for information about the consultation). Increasing the amount of translation would enhance transparency further.

The FCA’s consumer credit consultation explicitly invites comments from regular people:

The majority of adults in the UK are customers, or potential customers, of financial services firms. So anyone may be interested in commenting on how we propose to regulate consumer credit firms.

And there’s an outline of the proposals in addition to the 193 page consultation document and 429 pages of appendices. But although the FCA seems to be trying to communicate with people and not just with regulated firms, this article in the Guardian which describes some aspects of the proposals does not encourage people to comment on them but rather seems to present the proposed new rules as a done deal. The Independent takes a similar approach, although an article on the Express website states that “a consultation is open until December 3 and the FCA will publish its final rules and guidance in February.” Which? announced that it is collecting consumers’ stories of their experiences with the credit industry to share them with the FCA.


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