The Global Dominance of European Competition Law Over American Antitrust Law

Posted by Social Science Research Network

The Global Dominance of European Competition Law Over American Antitrust Law

By Anu Bradford (Columbia University), Adam S. Chilton (University of Chicago), Katerina Linos (University of California) & Alex Weaver (Linklaters

The world’s biggest consumer markets — the European Union and the United States — have adopted different approaches to regulating competition. This has not only put the EU and US at odds in high-profile investigations of anticompetitive conduct, but also made them race to spread their regulatory models. Using a novel dataset of competition statutes, we investigate this race to influence the world’s regulatory landscape and find that the EU’s competition laws have been more widely emulated than the US’s competition laws. We then argue that both “push” and “pull” factors explain the appeal of the EU’s competition regime: the EU actively promotes its model through preferential trade agreements and has an administrative template that is easy to emulate. As EU and US regulators offer competing regulatory models in domains as diverse as privacy, finance, and environmental protection, our study sheds light on how global regulatory races are fought and won.

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