Dr. Tracy Adams, Professor and Chair in the Department of Sociology at Western University, spoke with Dr. John O’Keefe about the constantly evolving concept of public interest and its impact on dentistry.
- The regulation of professional groups has often been justified as being in the public interest.
- In recent decades, policymakers in Anglo-American countries have questioned whether self-regulating professions have truly served the public interest, or whether they have merely acted in their own interests.
- Based on legislative records and policy reports an exploration is undertaken of meanings attached to professional self-regulation and the public interest in Canada by state actors over the past 150 years.
- There is a shift in the definition of the public interest away from service quality and professional interests, towards efficiency, human rights, consumer choice, and in some contexts business interests. Changing views of the public interest contribute to regulatory change.