Jevons Institute for Competition Law and Economics

Jevons Institution for Competition Law and Economics

Credit value: 15 credits (6 ECTS)
Module Convenor:
Dr. Ioannis Lianos
Other Teachers:
Dr Christopher Stothers
Prof John Kallaugher
Intercollegiate teaching: No
Teaching Method: 10 x two-hour seminars
Who may enrol: LLM students, Other UCL Masters students
Prerequisites: None
Barred module combinations: This module cannot be taken with LAWSG048.
Core module for specialism: Competition Law, Intellectual Property Law, Law and Economics
Practice Assessment: to be confirmed
Assessment method for Masters students: 2-hour unseen written examination
Module Overview

Module summary

The module illustrates the connections among innovation policy, competition law and intellectual property (IP) rights and shows the way in which the law can work as a key instrument of innovation policy. This is the most dynamic and active area of competition law enforcement worldwide as this can be illustrated by the competition cases brought against hi tech firms, such as Microsoft, Intel, Google, Intel and the patent wars (and subsequent competition law battles) between global tech powerhouses, such as Apple and Samsung. These cases push competition law and intellectual property law to new boundaries and bring also forward the issue of establishing institutions that are aware of the challenge of protecting innovation and dynamic efficiency. The subjects covered include:

  • Innovation policy and its interaction with competition law and IP law
  • The tension between sector-specific approaches to IP law and more horizontal approaches
  • Is IP law promoting innovation? Examples of alternative approaches
  • Competition law and monopolistic practices involving IP rights
  • vertical integration and related licensing practices by IP holders
  • horizontal restraints involving IP rights licensing
  • mechanisms integrating competition policy concerns within IP law (e.g. the patent misuse doctrine, compulsory licensing)
  • the development of international standards for the IP/Antitrust interface (WTO)
  • the interaction between competition law and IP rights in specific sectors such as pharmaceuticals, the music industry, biotechnology or software.

Module syllabus

Topics examined

• Introduction to the law and economics of competition law (antitrust law principles, objectives of antitrust law, interaction with IP rights)
• Introduction to the Law and Economics of IP law and regulatory/non regulatory/open source alternatives
• Competition policy beyond competition law: exhaustion doctrines
• Unilateral monopolistic practices involving IP rights I (structure of Art. 102/Section 2 Sherman Act// refusals to license or sell IP rights)
• Monopolistic Practices involving IP rights II : exclusionary practices: product design, interoperability, tying, bundling
• Monopolistic Practices involving IP rights III: abusive IP litigation, use and abuse of regulatory procedures
• Monopolistic Practices involving IP rights IV: Excessive royalties/exploitative abuses
• Competition Law remedies in an IP context: the Microsoft and Google case studies, evaluation of IP rights
• Standard setting and competition law
• Compulsory licensing, Patent misuse doctrine, doctrine of equivalents, jurisdictional and procedural issues governing the antitrust/IP interface in Europe and in the United States
• Antitrust analysis of technology and IP agreements
• The seminar will include case studies from various economic sectors: the music industry, pharma, biotechnology, databases, software

Recommended materials

  • *Dominique Guellec & Bruno van Pottelsberghe de la Potterie, The Economics of the European Patent System (OUP, 2007)
  • *Kevin Coates, Competition Law and the Regulation of Technology Markets (OUP, 2011)

Preliminary reading

Christina Bohannan and Herbert Hovenkamp, Creation without Restraint (OUP, 2011)
Ioannis Lianos and Rochelle Dreyfuss, New Challenges in the Intersection between Competition Law and Intellectual Property (UCL CLES Publication, 2013)

Other information: The class is very interactive and involves some team work with the aim to understand the application of competition law and IP rights in specific industries
Prizes for this module:
Valentine Korah prize
Jevons Institute prize