2010 Creative Writing Contest

There ought to be a regulation for that…

Contest concluded March 23, 2010.  The winners are: 

Offer a Solution!

Tell us—in an essay, play, short story, or poem—what regulation you’d write or change to solve an economic issue.

What’s a Regulation?

Regulations clarify, implement, and enforce laws. They contain specific requirements about what’s legal and what’s not to make laws practical on a day-to-day basis. Since 1887, Congress has created regulatory agencies with the power to write regulations.

Think Carefully

Make sure to write about the costs and benefits of your regulation—both the immediate ones and any second-order consequences (also known as unintended consequences). Many things don’t turn out exactly as planned. Don’t worry about finding a law on which to base your regulation; Concentrate instead on thinking logically and thoughtfully about the details that might fix the economic problem you see and all the possible costs and benefits from that potential solution.


Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations cover a range of issues, from setting standards for clean water to specifying clean-up levels for toxic waste sites to controlling air pollution. Under the Clean Air Act, the EPA has written regulations that set emission standards for new motor vehicles and new motor vehicle engines. The Federal Reserve Board of Governors enforces many federal laws, including the Check Clearing for the 21st Century Act (Check 21), through regulations such as Regulation CC. Check 21 was designed to help banks handle more checks electronically. A few things that Regulation CC was modified to do were state the requirements of Check 21 that apply to banks and provide a model form for consumer disclosures.

Submission Deadline: January 25, 2010

Student Entry Form

Economic concepts:

Be sure to include economic concepts in your submission. Here are some examples: