Competition Law and Policy: Controlling Private Power

  • Summer schools
  • Department of Law
  • Application code SS-LL200
  • Starting 2018

Competition law involves the use of legal tools to control the exercise of market power by economic actors, in order to protect the competition forces within the market.  The competition rules present a powerful set of tools for public enforcement agencies—and, indeed, private litigants—to prevent and sanction harmful instances of private power. 

This course provides a comprehensive overview of the structure and substance of the EU competition rules, with comparative assessment of other competition systems (particularly that of the United States), examining both the current legal framework and the underlying competition policy considerations which have informed its application and development.

Session: Three
Dates: 30 July - 17 August 2018
Lecturers: Dr Niamh Dunne


Programme details

Key facts

Level: 200 level. Read more information on levels in our FAQs

Fees:  Please see Fees and payments

Lectures: 36 hours 

Classes: 18 hours

Assessment*: One examination and one essay

Typical credit**: 3-4 credits (US) 7.5 ECTS points (EU)

*Assessment is optional

**You will need to check with your home institution

For more information on exams and credit, read Teaching and assessment


Introduction to legal methods or equivalent.

Programme structure

The EU competition law framework incorporates three key provisions:

  • Article 101 TFEU, which prohibits anti-competitive agreements and other forms of coordination between economic actors;
  • Article 102 TFEU, which prohibits the abuse of market power held by an economic entity which holds a dominant position in the market; and
  • EU Merger Regulation (EUMR), which prohibits mergers and other concentrations which would significantly impede effective competition in the internal market. 

Moreover, EU competition law is enforced under a distinctive and multi-faceted system which involves centralised enforcement by the European Commission, decentralised enforcement by the national competition authorities of the Member States, and a growing emphasis on private enforcement via antitrust damages actions brought by ‘private attorneys general’.

This course aims to provide participants with a comprehensive understanding of the core rules and principles that underpin the EU competition system, alongside broader competition policy considerations.  It does so through a systematic examination and assessment of each of these three areas of substantive competition law, as well as an exploration of the enforcement context plus the wider policy landscape.  Although the course focuses primarily on the competition rules of the EU, comparative analysis to other jurisdictions—particularly the US—will be made where appropriate.

Course outcomes

The aim of this course is to equip students with the knowledge and skills to understand, apply and analyse the legal rules found in systems of competition law worldwide.  In addition to a thorough grounding in the substantive competition rules, emphasis will be placed upon the crucial, and often controversial, question as to whether and when competition law should be deployed to control private power within the market and society more generally.  The course thus aims to provide participants with both a strong technical knowledge of EU competition law and the ability to engage with and critique issues of competition policy.


LSE Law has excelled once again in the UK’s nationwide assessment of research quality, impact and environment. The Research Excellence Framework results published in December 2014 show that LSE Law is the UK’s number one law school for legal research.

The 2015 QS World University faculty rankings for Law also place the LSE in the world’s top ten for the subject, making it London’s best Law School.

On this three week intensive programme, you will engage with and learn from full-time lecturers from the LSE’s law faculty. 

Reading materials

The following are the core textbooks utilised on this course:

  • Whish and Bailey (2015) Competition Law (8th ed., Oxford University Press),

  • Jones and Sufrin (2016) EC Competition Law: Text, Cases and Materials. (6th ed., Oxford University Press)

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Summer Schools Competition Law and Policy: Controlling Private Power (2018)

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