by Jeff Sovern
Last March, the CFPB Monitor Blog, announced that "a group of representatives from across a variety of industries met to discuss the formation of a Research Integrity Council (RIC), the purpose of which will be to make recommendations to improve the quality and veracity of the research being conducted by the CFPB to inform its rulemaking process." According to that blog post, one concern about CFPB research was "the lack of transparency into the activities of the [CFPB's] Academic Research Council."
Yesterday, the CFPB Monitor reported that the RIC had held a Research Academic Forum. The blog post summarized remarks by the speakers, who included Thomas Durkin, retired Senior Economist in the Federal Reserve Board’s Division of Research and Statistics; Howard Beales, Professor at George Washington University School of Business and former Director of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Bureau of Consumer Protection; and Todd Zywicki, Professor of Law at George Mason University School of Law, Senior Scholar of the Mercatus Center, and former Director of the FTC Office of Policy Planning. Mr. Durkin "expressed concerns with the overall lack of transparency in how the CFPB conducts its research . . . ."
I was curious to discover more about RIC. I have learned a lot from the CFPB Monitor and the firm that produces it, Ballard Spahr, and so I hoped to learn more from the RIC web site, and maybe even be able to listen to the Research Academic Forum. I googled the Research Integrity Council and Research Academic Forum, but couldn't come up with anything beyond links to the CFPB Monitor blog postings. How about some transparency, guys?