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Title: 'Better' regulation through social entrepreneurship? : innovative and market-based approaches to address the digital challenge to copyright regulation
Author: Richter, Wolf R.
ISNI:       0000 0004 2719 2495
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2010
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After the initial excitement about the Internet as a space outside of governmental control has evaporated and courts in several states have applied national laws to ‘Cyberspace’, there is now a consensus among scholars that regulators have in principle the authority and capacity to regulate the Internet. Nevertheless, the application of the established tools of regulation - legislation and adjudication - to the current challenges to copyright regulation posed by the Internet has proven to be ineffective and produced undesirable side effects. Although market self-regulation has been suggested as a more efficacious approach to regulating the Internet and has proven effective in content regulation and Internet governance, the market has so far been unsuccessful in providing an effective and efficient remedy to the challenges to copyright regulation. The purpose of this thesis is to examine a novel approach to regulation and analyse its benefits and limitations. The novel approach defies the conceptualisation as co- and self-regulation, but introduces the solution from outside the regulated environment through entrepreneurship and innovation, and relies on the forces of the market to become effective. In this thesis, I analyse the regulatory systems implemented by two private organisations, Noank Media and Creative Commons, in China’s reportedly ineffective copyright law environment and find that their market-based and innovative approach to regulation can be understood as a form of social entrepreneurship. Social enterprises have been claimed to deliver social goods more effectively and efficiently than governmental intervention, because they are said to rely on local knowledge, to be driven by the demand of the stakeholders, and to be focused on social value creation. Based on quantitative and qualitative fieldwork with Noank Media’s and Creative Common’s stakeholders in China I analyse to what extent these two enterprises managed to successfully leverage the assets of social entrepreneurship. I conclude that while the novel approach has demonstrated the potential to produce more effective and more efficient regulation, it does not automatically result in Better Regulation. Further efforts are required to ensure participation, transparency, and public accountability, and to avoid regulatory fragmentation.
Supervisor: Brown, Ian ; Nicholls, Alex Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Shaping the Internet ; Internet and everyday life ; Law and the internet ; Media and Public Policy ; Intellectual property ; Entrepreneurship ; blanket license ; creative commons ; copyright law ; copyright regulation ; China ; legal entrepreneurship ; social entrepreneurship ; legal innovation ; self-regulation ; co-regulation ; better regulation