Defining the goals of the Superfund program

by James R. Vernon

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Hazardous waste management has become an increasingly important public policy issue, requiring, among other things, that appropriate and acceptable levels of risk be determined. Since governmental response to the problem has been slow, research aimed specifically at defining the goals of hazardous waste policy must reflect the need for swift action. This paper discusses a "bootstrap" approach that would enable policymakers to evaluate the success of hazardous waste management and cleanup without setting specific goals prior to taking remedial action. It demonstrates this approach within the context of a research design for studying goal formulation for the Superfund program.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Paper series. The paper was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.

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