Getting policy development right

Policy making should promote consumer welfare
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01.Getting policy development right

Policy making should promote consumer welfare, base decisions on the best available evidence and ensure effective approaches in one area are given due weight by policy makers responsible for a different area or set of problems.

How can we put consumers at the heart of policy?


Consumer welfare is the ultimate objective of consumer policy. But is the consumer interest truly at the heart of policy development?

Are we listening to the consumer voice?


Do consumers’ experiences get taken seriously when policy is developed? How do we ensure disparate consumer voices are heard to the same extent as industry interests? How should consumers and consumer organisations be supported and resourced to participate in policy development through consumer engagement and consumer advocacy? Are the right consumer voices being heard?


Why do some industries have good consumer protection but not others?

How can we better share expertise across policy development silos? Do current administrative arrangements promote capture of policy development by industry interests? Is there a way to avoid bad consumer policy in specific industries?

Acting on the best evidence


How can policy development make better use of:

  • regulators’ experience

  • complaints data

  • case studies

  • ‘hidden complaints’

  • academic and other research, and

  • overseas developments?

Approaches to particular questions, at the very least it can identify areas that are worthy of future inquiry or research.


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