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The innovation theory of harm: an appraisal

Author

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  • Vincenzo Denicolò
  • Michele Polo

Abstract

In its recent decision on the Dow-DuPont case, the European Commission has adopted an innovation theory of harm (IToH), which holds that even horizontal mergers whose static effects are benign may be regarded as anticompetitive in a dynamic perspective, as mergers generally stifle innovation. This paper critically assesses the IToH, arguing that its theoretical foundations are too fragile to be the basis for radical policy changes. Antitrust authorities and the courts should continue to consider the impact of horizontal mergers on innovation, bearing in mind that the effect can go either way.

Suggested Citation

  • Vincenzo Denicolò & Michele Polo, 2018. "The innovation theory of harm: an appraisal," IEFE Working Papers 103, IEFE, Center for Research on Energy and Environmental Economics and Policy, Universita' Bocconi, Milano, Italy.
  • Handle: RePEc:bcu:iefewp:iefewp103
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    4. Tom Lee & Louis L. Wilde, 1980. "Market Structure and Innovation: A Reformulation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 94(2), pages 429-436.
    5. Kamien, Morton I & Muller, Eitan & Zang, Israel, 1992. "Research Joint Ventures and R&D Cartels," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(5), pages 1293-1306, December.
    6. repec:eee:ecolet:v:167:y:2018:i:c:p:136-141 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Flavio Delbono & Vincenzo Denicolo, 1991. "Incentives to Innovate in a Cournot Oligopoly," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(3), pages 951-961.
    8. Joseph Farrell and Carl Shapiro., 2000. "Scale Economies and Synergies in Horizontal Merger Analysis," Economics Working Papers E00-291, University of California at Berkeley.
    9. Motta, Massimo & Tarantino, Emanuele, 2017. "The effect of horizontal mergers, when firms compete in prices and investments," Working Papers 17-01, University of Mannheim, Department of Economics.
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    11. Perry, Martin K & Porter, Robert H, 1985. "Oligopoly and the Incentive for Horizontal Merger," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(1), pages 219-227, March.
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    13. F. Delbono & L. Lambertini, 2017. "Innovation and product market concentration: Schumpeter, Arrow and the inverted-U shape curve," Working Papers wp2006, Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna.
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    19. Richard Gilbert, 2006. "Looking for Mr. Schumpeter: Where Are We in the Competition-Innovation Debate?," NBER Chapters,in: Innovation Policy and the Economy, Volume 6, pages 159-215 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Mergers; Innovation;

    JEL classification:

    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • L40 - Industrial Organization - - Antitrust Issues and Policies - - - General
    • K21 - Law and Economics - - Regulation and Business Law - - - Antitrust Law
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives

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