The Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) serves as the single regulator of energy development in Alberta, Canada, overseeing the “efficient, safe, orderly and environmentally responsible” development of oil, natural gas, coal, and oil sands throughout the province.
Soon after the AER was created in mid-2013, it developed a vision to be “recognized as best-in-class, ensuring the safe, environmentally responsible development of energy resources for the benefit of all Albertans.”
The AER’s Best-in-Class Project, convened independently under the auspices of the Penn Program on Regulation (PPR) at the University of Pennsylvania, constituted a process designed to help inform the AER and other regulators around the world about how to answer the question of what makes a best-in-class or excellent regulator.
To create a framework for excellence that can be practically applied by the AER and other regulators, this report expands upon three core attributes of excellence:
(1) Utmost Integrity. This is about much more than just a lack of corruption; it is also about the regulator’s commitment to serving the public interest, to respecting the law, and to working with duly elected representatives.
(2) Empathic Engagement. This is about transparency and public engagement, but also about how respectfully the regulator and its personnel treat regulated entities, affected landowners, and all other concerned individuals.
(3) Stellar Competence. This is about the actual delivery of outcomes that maximize public value and the capacities built and actions taken to achieve a high level of performance.