Business and Regulatory Impact Assessments (BRIA) toolkit

This toolkit is a collection that makes up the complete BRIA guidance. We have also produced a template for completing a BRIA and best practice examples.

Purpose and Intended Effect 

This section of the toolkit covers three elements: background; objectives and rationale for government intervention, and the five principles of Better Regulation.

  • What is the objective of the regulation?  
  • How does it fit with Scottish, UK or EU policy?


Outline the existing situation and whether there is currently a policy framework in place addressing the issue.

Objective and rationale 

Any government intervention should have a clear rationale.  It is important to articulate the rationale at the very earliest stage in the policy development process. Analysis of the market failure or other objectives should underpin the evidence base for policy development.  It also provides a guide to the likely additional costs and benefits that may occur as a consequence of any proposed intervention.  To begin this it is important to identify:

  • The analytical support you will require and the external stakeholders who can be expected to support you, and working with them:
  • The problem, its scale and the context in which it arises;
  • Evidence and nature of the problem; and 
  • The probability that it will occur and likely frequency.

Consideration of the rationale for the policy intervention should also be outcome-focused, taking account of the National Performance Framework and the Government’s Economic Strategy.

You should also consider whether there are alternatives to regulation, such as voluntary regulation and self–regulation.   The Scottish Government takes account of the Scottish Retail Consortiums’ Framework for Government Sponsored Voluntary Regulation.



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