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Comparing Cournot and Bertrand equilibria in a differentiated duopoly with product R&D

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  • Symeonidis, George

Abstract

This paper compares Bertrand and Cournot equilibria in a differentiated duopoly with substitute goods and product R&D. I find that R&D expenditure, prices and firms� net profits are always higher under quantity competition than under price competition. Furthermore, output, consumer surplus and total welfare are higher in the Bertrand equilibrium than in the Cournot equilibrium if either R&D spillovers are weak or products are sufficiently differentiated. If R&D spillovers are strong and products are not too differentiated, then output, consumer surplus and total welfare are lower in the Bertrand case than in the Cournot case. Thus a key finding of the paper is that there are circumstances where quantity competition can be more beneficial than price competition both for consumers and for firms.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal International Journal of Industrial Organization.

Volume (Year): 21 (2003)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 39-55

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Handle: RePEc:eee:indorg:v:21:y:2003:i:1:p:39-55

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505551

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  1. Amir, Rabah, 2000. "Modelling imperfectly appropriable R&D via spillovers," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 18(7), pages 1013-1032, October.
  2. Symeonidis, George, 1999. "Cartel stability in advertising-intensive and R&D-intensive industries," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 62(1), pages 121-129, January.
  3. S. Baranzoni & P. Bianchi & L. Lambertini, 2000. "Market Structure," Working Papers 368, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
  4. Bester, H. & Petrakis, E., 1991. "The Incentives for Cost Reduction in a Differentiated Industry," Papers 9136, Tilburg - Center for Economic Research.
  5. Häckner, Jonas, 1999. "A Note on Price and Quantity Competition in Differentiated Oligopolies," Research Papers in Economics 1999:9, Stockholm University, Department of Economics.
  6. Qiu, Larry D., 1997. "On the Dynamic Efficiency of Bertrand and Cournot Equilibria," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 75(1), pages 213-229, July.
  7. Nirvikar Singh & Xavier Vives, 1984. "Price and Quantity Competition in a Differentiated Duopoly," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 15(4), pages 546-554, Winter.
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