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Rule‐free regulation : Exploring regulation ‘without rules’ and apart from ‘deontic categories’


Regulation can occur “with (specific) rules/norms” or “without (specific) rules/norms”. Numerous studies have been devoted to the first option. To the point where “regulation” and “rules” have often been seen to coincide in some academic research, and also in everyday ways of thinking. We deal with the second option in this article: regulation without rules/norms. Namely, a type of regulation by which it is intended to influence others' behaviour without recourse to rules/ norms, and without directly altering the “normative environment”.