There is a strong correlation between concentration and corruption: monopolies spend much more on lobbying (and bribery) than firms in competitive industries do, and they have stronger incentives to corrupt politicians and regulators. Monopolies also create a culture that immerses regulators in pro-monopoly talking points and worldviews. We need to counterbalance that influence with public voices, to remind regulators of the real world stakes. And we need to structurally dismantle monopoly power to end this vicious cycle.
Competition policy in Europe, as elsewhere, has been locked down inside an elite, exclusive, technocratic “competition bubble.” Lots of frenetic activity goes on inside, with lawyers, academics, consultancies, regulators, all talking to each other in a particular technical language, and thinking about competition policy in narrow, often myopic ways, which to outsiders can seem divorced from reality.read more
We co-hosted a wide-ranging, rich and highly energetic conference event yesterday in Brussels. The recording is now available.read more