The Competitive Tendering of Lifeline Ferry Services Workshop

Issued: Fri, 20 May 2016 12:03:00 BST

The Adam Smith Business School hosted an interdisciplinary law and economics workshop titled ‘The competitive tendering of lifeline ferry services: An interdisciplinary investigation of unintended consequences’.     

The workshop aimed to investigate the unintended consequences of legal interventions (mainly EU law) to achieve economic efficiencies. This workshop was planned in the context of the imminent award of the Clyde and Hebrides ferry contract by the Scottish Government.           

Event Details         

DateThursday 2 June 2016        

Time: 11.00am - 3.30pm         

Venue: Room 305, Gilbert Scott Building, Adam Smith Business School at the University of Glasgow        

Information: For information related to this event please contact: Hannah McShane at        

Workshop Featured Speakers     

John Temple Lang resized image

Nish pic 2

 John Temple Lang, formerly of the Directorate General for Competition, European Commission and now of Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP Brussels: Visiting Senior Research Fellow, University of Oxford: Professor, Trinity College Dublin.         ‌      ‌

‌Nishatabbas Rehmatulla, Research Associate, UCL Energy Institute, expert on low-carbon shipping.              

Discussion points for the workshop included:     

  • What are the conditions required to ensure competitive tendering for lifeline services provide an efficient service?  
  • Does tendering lead to a more sustainable service both economically and environmentally? 
  • In the context of life line services what are the comparative advantages of competitive tendering over monopoly provision including adequate regulation? 
  • What are the unintended consequences of competitive tendering on local communities reliant on the provision of life line services? Does EU competition law adequately account for situations in which competitive tendering has unintended consequences on local communities such as loss of employment and strategic capacity? 
  • Can enhanced local community involvement alleviate the limitations of monopoly provision by ensuing the long term sustainability of service provision? 
  • How can ‘effectiveness’ be measured from the perspective of local communities and the affected workforce? 
  • Does EU competition law rules encourage public monopolies over the provision of State Aid? 
  • What are the existing templates of permitted negotiated agreements in EU law that account for the unintended consequences of competitive tendering?

'The workshop on the unintended consequences of competitive tendering was a very successful day and we have received very good feedback from the participants who included trade union representatives from the UK and Europe, lawyers and economists.  We look forward to future collaborative activities with participants and others who were unable to attend on the day in the form of grants, academic papers and policy interventions, to progress this important area of research.'  

Jeanette Findlay Senior Lecturer (Economics)    



 Enquiries: Hannah McShane


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