Competition Policy and International Property Rights

 - Dieses Modul wird weiter und in unveränderter Form durch PD Dr. Johannes Stephan angeboten -

Responsible: Dr. Johannes Stephan

The module is offered every summer semester (Apr - July) and is mainly designed for IBDEM-students of the second semester. The material for the course and the seminar can be accessed through OPAL (link below).

Material for the lectures and seminars


This module is split into two sections. The objective of the first section is to inform students about the role of market-competition and competition policy for economic development with a focus on emerging markets. In particular, the pros and cons of competition law enforcement in emerging markets, as discussed in academia and the (international) political sphere, are critically reviewed.
The objective of the second section is to make students aware of the two faces of IPR protection (copyright, trademark, trade secrets, and patents): the protection of IPR as a driver of investment, research and development, as well as innovation on the one side, and IPR as a hindrance to the dissemination, use of knowledge, and of competition on the other.

The module consists of two courses: "Market-competition and competition policy", and "The economics of intellectual property rights".


Course 1: Market-competition and competition policy

  1. The market economy system and competition
    • Conceptual approaches to competition
    • The static framework of allocation-efficiency: perfect competition
    • Leaving the world of perfect competition (Sraffa, Robinson,  Chamberlin)
    • Workable competition (Clark)
    • Leaving the static world (Schumpeter)
    • The IO-approach of Structure, conduct, performance
    • Harvard school, Chicago school, Contestable markets
  2. Economic effects of competition
    • The meaning of competition: Hayek (1948), or “Competition as a Discovery Procedure” (1978)
    • Economic effects of competition on firms
    • Economic effects of competition on consumers
  3. Competition and market structure
    • Concentration and intensity of competition
    • Oligopoly-theory in a nut-shell
    • Well-known examples of oligopolistic markets
    • Determinants of market structure
  4. The goals of competition policy
    • Protection of competition and regulation where market failure precludes competition
    • The main fields of competition policy (monopoly, restrictive practices, mergers)
    • A comparative overview of competition laws and policies
    • Multilateral framework for competition policy
  5. Competition as an engine of technological economic growth
    • At the most general theoretical level
    • OECD Global Fora on Competition
    • Import substitution policy and infant industry strategy
    • Export-oriented policy: small country case and e.o.s.
    • Investment policies
    • R&D, inter-firm cooperation, and innovation policies
    • Intellectual property rights (IPR) and competition policy
    • State-owned enterprises and the issue of control over tax base
    • Experience from East Asian Tigers
    • Substitutes and competing priorities

Course 2: The economics of intellectual property rights

  1. The economic rationales for IPR regimes
    • General introduction
    • The investment, R&D, and innovation incentive of IPR protection
    • The knowledge-dissemination incentive of IPR protection
    • The resource-allocation incentive of IPR protection
    • The incentives of IPR protection: in political economy-terms
  2. IPR protection, the protection of competition, and the international dimension
    • IPR regime as part of a competition regime
    • The ‘mis-use’ of the IPR regime
    • The international dimension of IPR


Student presentations (case studies) in seminars

  • Case studies on recent competition law enforcements or competition policy cases
  • Case studies of IPR infringement or insightful IPR protection strategy by a transnational company or a country
  • Case studies on technology transfer agreements with explicit IPR provisions  

Time and duration

2 semesters (2 hours per week lectures and 2 hours per week seminars), summer semesters only


For each of the two courses within the cluster, a presentation of 20 minutes has to be done as well as a final written test of 90 minutes has to be taken. The overall mark for the cluster is computed as the weighted average of the marks for the written test (70%) and the presentations (30%).

ETCS - points

6 ETCS points are credited for 180 hours, of which 60 (academic) hours are spent in class and the remainder is spent on self-study.

Basic literature

Course 1: Market-competition and competition policy

  • Lipzynski, J. and J. Wilson (2001), ‘Chapter 1: Industrial organisation: an introduction’, in: Industrial Organisation: An Analysis of Competitive Markets, FT Prentice Hall Person Education, pp. 1-13.
  • Lipzynski, J. and J. Wilson (2001), ‘Chapter 11: Competition policy’, in: Industrial Organisation: An Analysis of Competitive Markets, FT Prentice Hall Person Education, pp. 347-378.
  • Singh, A. (2002), Competition and Competition Policy in Emerging Markets: International and Developmental Dimensions, UNCTAD G-24 Discussion Paper No. 18.

Course 2: The economics of intellectual property rights

  • Andersen, B. (2003), ‘If ‘intellectual property rights’ is the answer, what is the question? Revisiting the patent controversies’, Econ. Innov. New Techn., 13(5), pp. 417-442
  • Stiglitz, Joseph E. (2004), Towards a pro-developmental and balanced IPR regime, Columbia University, mimeo

More literature will be provided during the semester!