Retrospective Review of Regulations

President Obama has put in place a 21st-century regulatory system – one that protects public health and welfare while promoting economic growth, innovation, competitiveness, and job creation.  A key part of this system is the Administration’s Retrospective Review or “lookback” efforts.   

The President institutionalized retrospective review of regulations in Executive Orders 13563 and 13610, requiring agencies to regularly report on the status of their retrospective review efforts.  The most recent agency reports can be found below.   

We are proud of the progress made to date on retrospective review, but we know we can do more. To that end, we've stepped up our collective efforts in the remaining months of the Administration to accelerate progress on retrospective review.  

As the President said in 2011, “We should have no more regulation than the health, safety, and security of the American people require. Every rule should meet that commonsense test.” OIRA, together with our agency colleagues, is determined to build upon the progress we have made since the President spoke those words. We will continue to expand the use of retrospective review, carefully consider ideas and input from the public as we make regulatory changes, and work to further institutionalize retrospective review in order to make government work more efficiently and effectively for the American people.  We look forward to making even more progress going forward. 


Department of Commerce Plans:

July 2015 Update: PDF
February 2015 Update: PDF
Final Plan: PDF
Preliminary Plan: PDF

Questions and Comments

Send Questions or Comments on the Commerce Open Government program to


Office of Privacy and Open Government
Office of the Chief Financial Officer and Assistant Secretary for Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce

Page last updated:March 1, 2017