Business Economics MA(SocSci)

Markets and Competition Policy ECON4010

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: Adam Smith Business School
  • Credits: 15
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course builds on the basic models of oligopoly and extends the analysis to more complex set-ups where firms can strategically enter/exit a market and can engage in research and development. We shall study the most modern forms of markets such as network markets and auctions. The focus is on firms' behaviours, incentives and the role of antitrust authorities.


Lectures: 10 x 2-hour lectures

Additional 1 hour revision lecture outside normal hours

Excluded Courses



Intended Learning Outcomes

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

Students will be introduced to various theoretical tools to be applied for the analysis of markets and industries, including auctions and networks. There will be opportunities to develop skills in evaluating the incentives for firm to perform research and development and the role of public policy in terms of intellectual property protection. Moreover, we will explore additional options firms operating in domestic and foreign markets have compared to domestic firms. A key aim is to explore the various areas of public policy and critically assess these policies. Students will engage in critical discussions using relevant literature and real-world scenarios.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course, students should be able to:

1. use the theoretical frameworks to investigate firms' behaviour in the markets (including in the presence of networks externalities and auctions);

2. explain the strategic (price and non-pricing) behaviour of firms facing potential entrants and the role of public policy;

3. explain what market power is and evaluate to which extent antitrust authorities can ensure healthy competition in markets;

4. carry out critical analysis of theoretical models and their applications to real market and present this analysis rigorously in written work;

5. undertake independent research (involving literature review, analysis of the empirical evidence and theoretical frameworks) to assess firms' behaviour and/or the working of competition authorities.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits