About Us

History of RSI

The Institute for Regulatory Science (RSI) was established in 1985 as a non-profit organization under section 501(c)3 code of the Internal Revenue Service. Between July 1989 and June 1995, the activities of RSI were conducted through the University of Maryland at Baltimore and Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, respectively. In July 1995, RSI began conducting its activities as an independent entity.

One of the key elements of regulatory science is Best Available Regulatory Science and Metrics for Evaluation of Regulatory Science Claims (BARS/MERSC). The evolution of BARS/MERSC progressed over several decades, beginning with the recognition that reliability of science is determined by independent peer review and that, as research continues, science evolves.

Application of BARS/MERSC led to development of foundational concepts of the role of science in the decision-making process. These concepts of how science can be effectively used to promote societal goals were expressed through development of several manuals addressing peer review, stakeholder participation, regulatory science communication; and other areas related to regulatory science.

RSI formerly relied on several centers to advance topics within Regulatory Science:

  • Risk Analysis Center
    Under the direction of six risk assessment thought leaders from several organizations, the Risk Analysis Center provided foundational development of the science of risk assessment, risk management, risk communication, and practical aspects of the use of risk assessment in the regulatory process.
  • Scientific and Engineering Services Center
    The Scientific and Engineering Services Center conducted mathematical modeling, statistical analysis, and evaluation of the validity of scientific claims based on predictive mathematical models for regulators and the regulated community.
  • Scientific and Technology Assessment and Review Center
    The Scientific and Technology Assessment and Review Center provided independent peer reviews, independent scientific assessments, and related activities to governments at all levels as well as to academia; and industry. The Center operated with a small in-house staff and relied upon many subject area experts in the broader science community to conduct the reviews and assessments. The Center was known for producing credible results economically and in a timely manner.
  • Technical Information Management Center
    The Technical Information Management Center managed the publications process within RSI and in collaboration with outside organizations and individuals. Publications included manuals covering various principles and tools of regulatory science, publications in peer-reviewed journal, peer review reports including those produced in cooperation with outside organizations, and wide variety of other types of information.
  • International Center for Environmental Safety and Health
    Due to global significance of International Center for Environmental Safety and Health, materials produced by this center are preserved on the RSI website.

Currently, RSI operates with a small in-house staff and relies upon highly-qualified individuals and organizations to conduct studies in various national laboratories; universities; private, organizations; and individual scientists and engineers.

RSI Mission

The Institute for Regulatory Science (RSI) was established to ensure that the societal decisions are based on Best Available Regulatory Science (BARS) and Metrics for Evaluation of Regulatory Science Claims (BARS/MERSC).

RSI is engaged in:

  • Assessing the scientific validity of scientific foundation of regulatory actions
  • Evaluating the results of studies performed by others through independent peer reviews
  • Interacting with learned organizations
  • Providing training courses
  • Providing services to all segments of the society including governments at the Federal, State, and local level

RSI covers physical, chemical, biological, health, and environmental sciences, as well as the entire field of engineering.

RSI's international activities emphasize regulatory science education in developing nations. An area of primary concern to RSI is science education including science education of the disadvantaged. Accordingly, RSI supports science education at K-12 as well as at the college level.

RSI operates as a non-profit scientific and educational organization with a status comparable to a private university. It seeks grants and contracts from government agencies and private organizations to conduct specific studies; to peer-review various activities; to set up scientific panels; and to conduct workshops, meetings, and training courses. RSI provides services to all organizations and individuals regardless of their race, ethnic background, or religious beliefs.