The chair of International Competition Policy investigates the consequences of antitrust regulations on final prices, consumer well-being, and social welfare. For instance, whether the European Union’s prohibition of price discrimination by big manufacturers leads to lower prices for final customers. The chair’s research is mainly theoretically oriented and builds upon and contributes to the theoretical literature on Industrial Organization - i.e., analyzing the strategic interactions of firms in markets with game theoretic tools.
Next to Industrial Organization and Competition Policy the chair also conducts research in Behavioral Economics, the field that departs from the standard assumption of fully rational decision makers (Homo Economicus). In particular, the chair is interested in non-standard risk preferences like loss aversion and how these preferences of customers or employees affect contracts offered by profit-maximizing firms and market efficiency. In other words, the chair contributes to the new fields of Behavioral Contract Theory and Behavioral IO. Analyzing the interaction between biased/naïve customers and rational profit-maximizing firms gives naturally rise to questions of customer protection, e.g., is it desirable to regulate roaming fees or interest rates on overdrafts in order to protect customers from exploitation by cell phone providers and banks, respectively?