UCL Faculty of Laws


Todd Davies

Key information

Email: todd.davies.22@ucl.ac.uk

Todd D

Todd is a PhD student at the Faculty of Laws, working under the supervision of Prof. Ioannis Lianos. Joining the Faculty in September 2022, Todd's research is funded through a UCL Faculty Research Scholarship. Todd holds a master’s degree in Politics and Technology from the Technical University of Munich and a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from the University of Manchester.


Research Supervisors:

Areas of expertise:

Competition Law & Policy; Law and Political Economy; Software Engineering; Computer Science; Complexity Science

Research interests:

"The idea of a competitive process implies a notion of change. Yet when it comes to the digital economy, things appear rather static. Markets are dominated by the same Big  Tech firms year after year. Indeed, the situation is so dire that some academics consider the digital economy more akin to a feudal system rather than a market-based one. Why?

While Big Tech firms insist that they operate under intense competitive pressure, competition authorities remain sceptical. Yet despite increasing scrutiny of large firms’ practices, competition law enforcement has proven ineffective at addressing market concentration and kick-starting the process of competition.

Contemporary competition law, developed for an industrial economy, focuses on the outcomes of the competitive process. As a result, we lack the vocabulary to discuss the process of competition itself, especially in the context of 21st century informational capitalism. My research therefore asks what toolkit is required to understand how competition (mal)functions in digital markets. Drawing from mathematical ecology, evolutionary economics, and complexity economics, I aim to to craft a set of complementary lenses and mid-level theories through which competition can be understood as a dynamic process. The hope is for such approaches to provide process-based rather than outcome-based justifications for competition law intervention."

Professional experience:

Todd currently teaches on the Faculty's Competition Law and Consumer Protection LLB module, and has previously taught on the Faculty's Law, Economics and Society LLB module.

Prior to his PhD, Todd worked as a software engineer in Big Tech for six years, working primarily on privacy and security software with hundreds of millions of users.

UCL associations/academic and professional memberships:


  • Computing Competition with Agent-Based Models” at the Econophysics Colloquium at the 2021 Conference on Complex Systems, Lyon
  • Zero Price, Zero Competition: How Marketization Fixes Anticompetitive Tying in Monetized Markets” at the Academic Society for Competition Law (ASCOLA) 2021 conference