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LS451W: COMPETITION LAW (2021-2022)

Last modified: 31 May 2022 13:05

Course Overview

This course focuses on the complex problems of establishing a correct legal regulation of competitive conditions in the EU. We examine: the economic theory of competition and the difficulties of translating this into effective legal regulation; the operation of Art 101 TFEU in multi-level and other complex markets; current developments within Art 102 TFEU; reform of the public and the private enforcement of EU Competition law.

Course Details

Study Type Undergraduate Level 4
Session Second Sub Session Credit Points 25 credits (12.5 ECTS credits)
Campus Aberdeen Sustained Study No
  • Professor Florian Becker

Qualification Prerequisites

  • One of Programme Level 3 or Programme Level 4 or Programme Level 5

What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

What other courses must be taken with this course?


What courses cannot be taken with this course?

Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

Course Aims: To provide students with the opportunity to examine and critically assess key issues in European competition law. Main Learning Outcomes: 1. Understanding the theory of competition law and its areas of controversy. 2. Understanding the origins of European competition law. 3. Understanding the distinction between European competition law and European competition policy and the relationship between the two. 4. Appreciating the application European competition law by the European Commission via case studies. 5. Appreciating the possible inadequacies of European competition law. Knowledge and Understanding By the end of the course students will have been introduced to, understood and critically evaluated, building on their understanding of similar concepts and principles from their study of national and of European Law: 1. Theories of Competition Law / competitive regulation; 2. Statutory provisions and materials concerning EU Competition Law; 3. Regulation of competition by the European Commission via Articles 101 and 102 TFEU; 4. Public enforcement of EU Competition Law; 5. Private enforcement of EU Competition Law. Subject-Specific Skills and Concepts Students will be able to: 1. Differentiate between and use appropriate primary and secondary sources and identify and retrieve up-to-date legal information using paper and electronic sources; 2. Use recognised methods of citation; 3. Use sources to support arguments and conclusions; 4. Recognise, analyse, and rank arguments and evidence in terms of relevance and importance by managing volume of legal sources and select key material to construct written or oral answers to a legal problem; 5. Identify the legal problem from information provided; 6. Address problems by reference to relevant material; 7. Bring together, integrate, compare and synthesise information and materials from a variety of different sources, which explore policy and doctrinal issues; 8. Be able to find in paper form legislative and case law materials in the Law Library; 9. Present arguments for and against propositions; 10. Be aware that arguments require to be supported by evidence, in order to meet legal requirements of proof by showing awareness of the need for evidence to support arguments; 11. Apply knowledge and analysis creatively to complex situations in order to provide arguable solutions to concrete problems by presenting a range of viable options from a set of facts and law; 12. Think critically and make critical judgements on the relative and absolute merits of particular arguments and solutions and make choices as to the most preferable; 13. Communicate orally and in writing (and electronically where appropriate) using English language by creating work in a permanent format that is understandable by the intended audience (through submission of exam answers, essays, and participating in seminar discussion); 14. Communicate in plain English, with legal terminology as needed; and 15. Display informed knowledge and understanding of the social, economic, moral and ethical contexts in which law operates by demonstrating legal knowledge in association with related policy, underlying social conditions, professional ethical issues and moral issues. Key Skills (Transferable): 1. Communicate orally and in writing; 2. Ability to work effectively to contribute to the group’s seminar tasks; 3. Ability to work independently, to organise and manage time, stress and effort in performance of tasks; 4. Problem solving skills; 5. Critical analysis; 6. Logical argument; 7. An ability to synthesise and organise complex materials and arguments; 8. With limited guidance act independently in planning and undertaking tasks; 9. Conduct informal oral presentations; 10. Make appropriate use of technology in research, writing and oral presentations; and 11. Reflect on own learning and to seek and make use of feedback. Content: The following will be covered: 1. Competition as a microeconomic concept and its translation into a legal concept. 2. The development of European competition law and competition policy. 3. The prohibition upon cartel activities (case study: e.g. The Vitamins Cartel). 4. The possibility of exemption for socially advantageous cartels. 5. The prohibition upon abusing a dominant position (case study: e.g. Microsoft?s abuse of its dominant position). 6. Enforcement of competition law by the European Commission. N.B. The case study component will be adjusted to reflect topical issues.

Contact Teaching Time

Information on contact teaching time is available from the course guide.

Teaching Breakdown

More Information about Week Numbers

Details, including assessments, may be subject to change until 31 August 2023 for 1st half-session courses and 22 December 2023 for 2nd half-session courses.

Summative Assessments

2500 word essay 50%

2500 word essay 50%


Resit: resubmission of failed elements

Formative Assessment

There are no assessments for this course.

Course Learning Outcomes

Knowledge LevelThinking SkillOutcome
FactualRememberILO’s for this course are available in the course guide.

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