20 Apr 2023

Rethinking Competition Law


Date: 20-21 April 2023

Location: University of East Anglia – School of Law, Earlham Hall 0.12, Norwich NR4 7TJ

Format: Hybrid

Local organisers: Elias Deutscher (CCP and UEA) and Peter Courridge (CCP and UEA)

Background and objective: Competition and competitive markets are multi-faceted concepts and social phenomena which have been the subject of philosophical, political, economic, sociological and legal research and theories. Most of the time, however, the contributions of these various approaches to the understanding of competition and competitive markets do not reach audiences beyond their respective disciplines and thus rarely speak to each other. Few attempts have so far been made to harness the full potential of the insights provided by the different disciplines that study the phenomenon of economic competition. However, transcending the compartmentalization of academic silos and making the insights of different disciplines accessible to a broad audience can bring forward new perspectives and fresh ideas to tackle persistent questions, challenges and concerns in competition law and policy.

This workshop seeks to bridge this gap. It brings together and showcases scholarship that uses a variety of methodological and interdisciplinary perspectives to “rethink” competition law in its political, historical, economic and social context. It aims to revisit the philosophical, conceptual, sociological, economic, and methodological foundations and aspects of competition law and policy at a time when the discipline faces numerous challenges, ranging from growing concerns over the economic, political, and societal impact of rising levels of industry concentration and changing competitive dynamics in the digital economy to debates over the appropriate role of what has been traditionally labelled as ‘non-economic concerns’ – such as sustainability, privacy or inequality – in competition law analysis.

The purpose of the workshop is to provide a forum to facilitate the dialogue and forge a network between scholars and practitioners interested in the conceptual and inter-disciplinary dimensions of competition law and their relevance for ‘rethinking’ competition law and policy in light of current and emerging challenges. The papers discussed in this workshop will be part of the Cambridge Handbook on the Theoretical Foundations of Antitrust and Competition Law that will appear with Cambridge University Press in 2024.