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TOTM Blog Symposium on Ag and Biotech M&A

TOTM Blog Symposium on Ag and Biotech M&A published on

My friends at Truth on the Market are hosting a blog symposium later this week including yours truly. It should be an interesting set of perspectives:

Agricultural and Biotech Mergers: Implications for Antitrust Law and Economics in Innovative Industries

March 30 & 31, 2017

Earlier this week the European Commission cleared the merger of Dow and DuPont, subject to conditions including divestiture of DuPont’s “global R&D organisation.” As the Commission noted:

The Commission had concerns that the merger as notified would have reduced competition on price and choice in a number of markets for existing pesticides. Furthermore, the merger would have reduced innovation. Innovation, both to improve existing products and to develop new active ingredients, is a key element of competition between companies in the pest control industry, where only five players are globally active throughout the entire research & development (R&D) process.

In addition to the traditional focus on price effects, the merger’s presumed effect on innovation loomed large in the EC’s consideration of the Dow/DuPont merger — as it is sure to in its consideration of the other two pending mergers in the agricultural biotech and chemicals industries between Bayer and Monsanto and ChemChina and Syngenta. Innovation effects are sure to take center stage in the US reviews of the mergers, as well.

What is less clear is exactly how antitrust agencies evaluate — and how they should evaluate — mergers like these in rapidly evolving, high-tech industries.

These proposed mergers present a host of fascinating and important issues, many of which go to the core of modern merger enforcement — and antitrust law and economics more generally. Among other things, they raise issues of:

  • The incorporation of innovation effects in antitrust analysis;
  • The relationship between technological and organizational change;
  • The role of non-economic considerations in merger review;
  • The continued relevance (or irrelevance) of the Structure-Conduct-Performance paradigm;
  • Market definition in high-tech markets; and
  • The patent-antitrust interface

Beginning on March 30, Truth on the Market and the International Center for Law & Economics will host a blog symposium discussing how some of these issues apply to these mergers per se, as well as the state of antitrust law and economics in innovative-industry mergers more broadly.

As in the past (see examples of previous TOTM blog symposia here), we’ve lined up an outstanding and diverse group of scholars to discuss these issues:

  • Allen Gibby, Senior Fellow for Law & Economics, International Center for Law & Economics
  • Shubha Ghosh, Crandall Melvin Professor of Law and Director of the Technology Commercialization Law Program, Syracuse University College of Law
  • Ioannis Lianos,  Chair of Global Competition Law and Public Policy, Faculty of Laws, University College London
  • John E. Lopatka(tent.), A. Robert Noll Distinguished Professor of Law, Penn State Law
  • Geoffrey A. Manne, Executive Director, International Center for Law & Economics
  • Diana L. Moss, President, American Antitrust Institute
  • Nicolas Petit, Professor of Law, Faculty of Law, and Co-director, Liege Competition and Innovation Institute, University of Liege
  • Levi A. Russell, Assistant Professor, Agricultural & Applied Economics, University of Georgia
  • Joanna M. Shepherd, Professor of Law, Emory University School of Law
  • Michael Sykuta, Associate Professor, Agricultural and Applied Economics, and Director, Contracting Organizations Research Institute, University of Missouri

Initial contributions to the symposium will appear periodically on the 30th and 31st, and the discussion will continue with responsive posts (if any) next week. We hope to generate a lively discussion, and readers are invited to contribute their own thoughts in comments to the participants’ posts.

The symposium posts will be collected here.

We hope you’ll join us!

 

 

11th Annual Conference on Empirical Legal Studies

11th Annual Conference on Empirical Legal Studies published on

11th Annual Conference on Empirical Legal Studies (CELS)
Duke Law School, Durham, North Carolina
Friday, November 18 and Saturday, November 19, 2016

Duke Law School is pleased to host the 11th Annual Conference on Empirical Legal Studies (CELS) on November 18-19, 2016. CELS is a highly regarded interdisciplinary gathering that draws scholars from across the country and internationally and is sponsored by the Society for Empirical Legal Studies. The conference brings together hundreds of scholars from law, economics, political science, psychology, policy analysis, and other fields who are interested in the empirical analysis of law and legal institutions. Papers are selected through a peer review process and discussion at the conference includes assigned commentators and audience questions.

Paper submissions are due by July 31, 2016.

For more information about the conference click here (https://law.duke.edu/cels2016/).

7th International Conference on Public-Private Partnerships

7th International Conference on Public-Private Partnerships published on

Registration is open for the seventh international conference on “Contracts, Procurement, and Public-Private Arrangements” on 14-15 June at Université Paris – Panthéon-Sorbonne.

This conference focuses on the recent developments in contract theories. Papers are invited on all topics of contract theories including: Relational contracting, transaction costs, renegotiations, incentives, award mechanisms, incomplete contracting, contract design, benchmarking, privatization, corruption, institutions.

See here for more information

Healthcare in the 21st Century: The Role of Competition

Healthcare in the 21st Century: The Role of Competition published on

This looks like a very interesting program, if you happen to be in the Seattle area on Sept 18.

Healthcare in the 21st Century: The Role of Competition
Friday, September 18

Seattle University School of Law

Synopsis

Healthcare is the single largest sector of the economy, it is undergoing extensive and controversial reform, and the central goals of reform – universal coverage and cost control – have not yet been achieved. Since the Affordable Care Act relies heavily on private markets to provide health services and health insurance, competition will play a crucial role in reform. Yet, competition policy issues are especially challenging in healthcare, where markets are distorted by the fee-for-service payment system, insurance coverage, and market power. Competition can help correct these distortions, enhancing access and affordability, but it can also threaten the supply of doctors, new drugs, and higher levels of care. The challenge is to develop policies that achieve the right balance of these goals. The symposium will address many of the key current competition issues in healthcare, including Accountable Care Organizations, acquisitions of physician groups by hospitals, reverse-payment settlements, federal negotiation of drug prices, mergers of insurance companies, off-label uses of prescription drugs, the regulatory environment for the healthcare workforce, and market provision of assisted reproduction technologies.

See the conference page for the agenda and registration information.

HT: D. Daniel Sokol

Public Choice Society Call For Papers

Public Choice Society Call For Papers published on

The Public Choice Society has issued a Call for Papers for their annual meetings March 10-12, 2016. The plenary speakers include Vernon Smith (Chapman Univ and 2002 economics Nobel laureate), Robert Cooter (UC Berkeley), David Levy (George Mason) and Sandra Peart (Richmond). If you’re not familiar with the Public Choice Society, their purpose statement reads:

The goal of the Society is to facilitate the exchange of research and ideas across disciplines in the social sciences, particularly economics, political science, sociology, law, and related fields. It started when scholars from all these groups became interested in the application of essentially economic methods to problems normally dealt with by political theorists. It has retained strong traces of economic methodology, but new and fruitful directions have developed that transcend the boundaries of any self-contained discipline.The Society meets annually to facilitate scholarly inquiry and exchange of ideas on the range of topics included in non-market decision making.

Paper proposals and early registration begin October 1. Proposals are due by December 1.

10th Annual Conference on Empirical Legal Studies

10th Annual Conference on Empirical Legal Studies published on

The 10th Annual Conference on Empirical Legal Studies will be held October 30-31, 2015, at Washington University in St. Louis. Sponsored by the Society for Empirical Legal Studies, and hosted by Washington University School of Law and the Center for Empirical Research in the Law, the conference will bring together hundreds of scholars from law, economics, political science, psychology, policy analysis, and other fields who are interested in the empirical analysis of law and legal institutions. The Call for Papers will be published in April. Submissions are due June 26. See the conference page for more details.

Journal of Law, Finance and Accounting International Conference 2015

Journal of Law, Finance and Accounting International Conference 2015 published on

The Journal of Law, Finance and Accounting (JLFA) and Hong Kong Polytechnic University School of Accounting and Finance are hosting an international conference June 1-2, 2015, on research at the intersection of the three fields. The JLFA is a new outlet sponsored by the NYU Stern School of Business, NYU Law School and KPMG. Per the email I received:

Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  1. The impact of the structure of the legal system — including legal origins, procedural rules, and the legal environment in general, on the evolution of financial contracts, financial markets, business enterprises and business groups.

  2. The impact of particular legal and market institutions, including accounting, on financial markets and corporate actions, and innovation, economic growth and stability.

  3. The co-evolution of the legal rules and market institutions that govern financial sector activity, that activity itself, and the nature of the broader economy and financial markets.

  4. The regulation, organization, and performance of financial institutions.

  5. The relationships between the structure and performance of financial institutions, and the performance of these institutions and the overall performance of financial markets and economies.

  6. The interplay between legal rules, accounting regulations, corporate governance, firm performance, cost of equity and debt capital, financial market performance, and economic performance.

  7. The political economy of the regulation of corporate governance, financial institutions, and financial markets.

  8. Accounting, finance, and legal issues concerning ownership and property.

Sounds like an interesting opportunity. For more information, see the conference announcement at SSRN (linked here).

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