Dr Anne Witt publishes monograph on EU Antitrust Law

Dr. Anne Witt recently published The More Economic Approach to EU Antitrust Law (Hart Publishing 2016). Dr. Witt was awarded a British Academy/Leverhulme grant and a visiting fellowship to the European University Institute, Florence, to carry out the research underlying this project.

The monograph explores the European Commission’s attempt to introduce a more economic approach to the EU antitrust rules that is guided by the key values and practical applications of economic theory. On the basis of an extensive empirical analysis of the Commission's main enforcement tools, the book establishes the substantial changes that the more economic approach has made to the Commission's enforcement practice over the past fifteen years. The approach not only introduced modern economic assessment tools to the Commission's analyses, but fundamentally changed the Commission's interpretation of the law.

Emulating one of the key credos of the US Antitrust Revolution thirty years earlier, the Commission reinterpreted the EU antitrust rules as aiming at the enhancement of economic consumer welfare only, and amended its understanding of key legal concepts accordingly. The monograph argues that the Commission's new understanding of the law has many benefits. Its key principles are logical, translate well into workable legal concepts and promise a great degree of accuracy. However, it also has a number of serious drawbacks as it stands. Most worryingly, its revised interpretation of the law is to large extents incompatible with the case law of the European Court of Justice, which has not been swayed by the exclusive consumer welfare aim.

The More Economic Approach to EU Antitrust Law (Hart Publishing 2016).

Dr Anne Witt is a lecturer in European Law whose research interests lie in EU competition law; US antitrust law; EU internal market and constitutional law; international trade law.

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