Revising the Technology Transfer Guidelines

Pierre Regibeau, Katharine Rockett, Apr 30, 2012

We were asked by DG Competition to provide an economic evaluation of the 2004 Technology Transfer Guidelines that would serve as an input into the formal review process initiated a few months ago. When assessing a long-standing piece of competition policy, the best approach is certainly to turn to the related cases that have arisen since the policy document came into force. However, for better or for worse, very few “technology transfer” cases have appeared on the European Competition radar since 2004. A priori then, it seems that the 2004 Guidelines have done a decent job of giving a reasonably clear picture of the types of conducts that might land an undertaking in hot water.

We therefore decided to organize our report around two different questions. First, have there been developments in industry practice that might call for a revision, clarification, or extension of the current Guidelines? Second, do we, as economists, feel that the current Guidelines are logically consistent, both internally and with respect to other policy documents emanating from DG Competition?

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