A world-renowned scholar of antitrust law and policy, Professor Hovenkamp was called “the dean of American antitrust law” by The New York Times in 2011. Hovenkamp received the John Sherman Award from the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice in 2008, awarded a few times a decade for “outstanding achievement in antitrust law, contributing to the protection of American consumers and to the preservation of economic liberty.”
- antitrust law
- legal and business history
Modern antitrust policy follows the consumer welfare principle (CWP), the proposition that antitrust policy should encourage markets to produce high output consistent with sustainable competition, and low prices. The market dominance of giant firms such as Amazon, however, is opening the door to a reevaluation of this antitrust standard, particularly from a new antitrust “movement” that has economic goals, such as protecting small businesses and controlling runaway profits, that can be at odds with promoting low prices. Penn Law and Wharton Professor Herbert Hovencamp evaluates the merits of three antitrust frameworks within the context of the law and economic history. While he acknowledges that business can cause harm to the lives of Americans in ways that extend beyond inflating prices—i.e., creating barriers to market entry, stifling innovation, controlling information, or limiting wages—he argues that the CWP remains best positioned to respond to antitrust problems, although it would benefit from technical improvements.
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November 16Antitrust in Labor Markets
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Wharton Professors Herb Hovenkamp and Ethan Mollick teamed up with Third Way earlier this spring to offer an all-day seminar on competition and entrepreneurship, aimed at senior Hill staffers. Hovenkamp, the leading authority on antitrust law, discussed anticompetitive labor practices within the context of antitrust enforcement; and Mollick, a preeminent authority on the financing of startup ventures, discussed the dynamics of crowdfunding. Mollick also led staffers through an immersive simulation exercise called The Startup Game, which put them into the position of having to think and make decisions as an entrepreneur, venture funder, or key employee of a startup entity.