Download publication

Policy Contribution

Innovation in EU merger control: walking the talk

European Union policymakers have in principle put innovation at the heart of competitiveness, in particular in the Europe 2020 strategy. But in merger control, assessments of the innovation effects of mergers are inadequate, even though mergers and acquisitions can have a significant impact on the development of the structure of an industry, and on its capability to innovate.

By: Date: February 29, 2012 Innovation & Competition Policy Tags & Topics

European Union policymakers have in principle put innovation at the heart of competitiveness, in particular in the Europe 2020 strategy. But in merger control, assessments of the innovation effects of mergers are inadequate, even though mergers and acquisitions can have a significant impact on the development of the structure of an industry, and on its capability to innovate.

EU merger control rules include scope for assessing the innovation effects of mergers, but in practice, the European Commission’s directorate-general for competition (DG COMP) is not ‘walking the talk’. Innovation effects are only assessed when claimed by parties to a merger, and this happens rarely. Where innovation effects have been claimed, they have not been decisive in any case, meaning DG COMP has not considered them important enough to influence its decision.

A framework should be put in place that makes the reporting of efficiency-related information by the merging parties mandatory, so that innovation effects can be properly assessed for all mergers. In addition, models can be used to make an assessment of the longer-term innovation effects of a merger, and to help inform decision-making.

The author acknowledges the excellent research assistance of Joan de Solà-Morales and Hendrik Meder, and would like to thank Lars-Hendrik Röller for discussing and commenting on earlier versions of the paper.

View comments
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Blog Post

Silvia Merler

Big data and first-degree price discrimination

What’s at stake: first-degree price discrimination - or person-specific pricing, had until recently been considered a theoretical case with unlikely real-world application. Yet the increasing availability of big data could make this possible. We review recent contributions on this issue.

By: Silvia Merler Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: February 20, 2017
Read article More on this topic

External Publication

Screen Shot 2017-02-15 at 11.25.21

The Future of the Postal Sector in a Digital World

Addresses major current problems in postal and delivery sector worldwide

By: Georgios Petropoulos and J. Scott Marcus Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: February 15, 2017
Read about event More on this topic

Upcoming Event

Mar
23
12:00

Artificial intelligence: challenges and opportunities

Rob Atkinson, the founder and president of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation will present his research work on the impact of artificial intelligence on our lives.

Speakers: Robert Atkinson, Anna Byhovskaya, Sebastian Gerlach and Georgios Petropoulos Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Blog Post

Scott Marcus

How good a shield is Privacy Shield?

Privacy Shield was put in place in 2016 to ensure that transfers of personal data from the EU to the US would be in compliance with European Union privacy law, and thus permissible. The institutional framework of Privacy Shield was weak, and depended on the good will of the US administration. Recent actions by the new administration, including the famous executive order forbidding residents from 7 predominantly Muslim countries to enter the US, may have (presumably unintended) effects on Privacy Shield. To preserve the validity of Privacy Shield in European Courts, strong EU-US cooperation and potentially additional agreements may become necessary.

By: J. Scott Marcus Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: February 7, 2017
Read about event More on this topic

Past Event

Past Event

State Aid and Tax Rulings

When do national tax rulings violate EU state aid rules? Does the European Commission's approach raise concerns about Member State Sovereignity and what is the impact on corporate investments in Europe?

Speakers: Clemens Fuest, Damien Neven, Gert-Jan Koopman, Nicole Robins and Guntram B. Wolff Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels Date: February 1, 2017
Read article More on this topic More by this author

External Publication

9783319418445

Policy and Politics in the Era of the Industrial Internet: How the Digital Transformation Will Change the Political Arena

The digital transformation has already had an impact on policymaking, and this trend will continue in the years to come. How will the political process change and how can influencers guide this change?

By: Giuseppe Porcaro Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: December 7, 2016
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Blog Post

IMG_20151119_103626

Search engines, big data and network effects

Search engines are intermediaries in a two-way market between users and advertisers. Their huge stocks of data about users and their preferences can help search engines offer better services to all parties. But does this make market entry difficult for new players? And can we see network effects emerging in the search engine market?

By: Georgios Petropoulos Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: November 22, 2016
Read about event More on this topic

Past Event

Past Event

Antitrust concerns in zero price markets

"Free" products and services are the latest trend but many of those are not actually free. Consumers are exchanging their data for them. Only recently competition policy practitioners have started to adequately account for the unique attributes of zero-price markets.

Speakers: Miguel de la Mano, Alexandre de Streel, Paul Gilbert, Georgios Petropoulos and Daniel Rubinfeld Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels Date: November 16, 2016
Read about event

Past Event

Past Event

How SMEs can meet the standards for trade

It is important for firms to meet the standards for trade but this can can prove difficult, especially for small and medium sized enterprises (SME).

Speakers: Arancha González, Marion Jansen and Denis Redonnet Topic: Global Economics & Governance, Innovation & Competition Policy Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels Date: November 9, 2016
Read article More on this topic More by this author

Podcast

Podcast

Unlocking the potential of innovation

Innovation is a hot topic in Europe. But how can its potential be used to the fullest, and what are the challenges in doing that?

By: Bruegel Topic: Innovation & Competition Policy Date: November 8, 2016
Read article Download PDF

Working Paper

wp-07-16_page_01

Providing efficient network access to green power generators: A long-term property rights perspective

This paper analyses the dynamic efficiency of several types of access regulation of a bottleneck transmission line in electricity markets.

By: Georgios Petropoulos and Bert Willems Topic: Energy & Climate, Innovation & Competition Policy Date: November 2, 2016
Read about event

Past Event

Past Event

Trends of the 21st century global economy and implications for Europe

Does the EU have all the necessary tools to deal with the trends of 21st century in global economy?

Speakers: Marco Buti, Maria Demertzis, Mikhail Fridman and Christian Kastrop Topic: Global Economics & Governance, Innovation & Competition Policy Location: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Brussels Date: October 26, 2016
Load more posts