Intellectual Property Rights, Innovation, and New Issues in Antitrust at this Weekend’s International Industrial Organization Conference

By TAP Staff Blogger

Posted on April 15, 2016


This weekend, economists from around the world will gather for the 14th Annual International Industrial Organization Conference. Hosted by the Industrial Organization Society (IOS), the three days of sessions will cover topics ranging from organizational economics, innovation and product development, media competition and advertising, intellectual property rights, and new issues in antitrust policy.


TAP scholars Michael Whinston and Shane Greenstein are participating in this renowned economics conference. Professor Whinston is giving the keynote address in which he will be discussing recent advances in the empirical analysis of vertical contracting. He will also be presenting his paper on the welfare effects in television markets. Professor Greenstein will participate in three sessions where he will discuss innovation and adoption, determinants of innovation, and technology adoption. Additionally, the Microsoft Corporation, which supports this TAP website, is sponsoring a session on competition issues in platform markets.


Professor Whinston’s paper, "The Welfare Effects of Vertical Integration in Multichannel Television Markets," co-authored with Robin Lee, Gregory Crawford, and Ali Yurukoglu, investigates the welfare effects of vertical integration of regional sports networks (RSNs) with programming distributors in U.S. multichannel television markets. The authors show that vertical integration can enhance efficiency by reducing double marginalization and increasing carriage of channels, but it can also harm welfare due to foreclosure and raising rivals' costs incentives.


Michael Whinston is the Sloan Fellows Professor of Management in the Applied Economics Group at MIT Sloan and Professor of Economics in the Economics Department. His research has covered a variety of topics in microeconomics and industrial organization, including firm behavior in oligopolistic markets, antitrust, game theory, the design of contracts and organizations, law and economics, and most recently, health economics. He has served as a coeditor of the RAND Journal of Economics, the leading journal in industrial organization, and is currently on the editorial board of the American Economic Journals: Microeconomics.


Professor Shane Greenstein will be chairing the session on Market, Innovation and Adoption as well as discussing his paper "Agglomeration of Invention in the Bay Area: Not Just ICT." Co-authored with Chris Forman and Avi Goldfarb, ‘Agglomeration of Invention’ documents an increase of the fraction of U.S. patenting of all kinds that is disproportionate to population growth and occurs within a variety of patent classes. Professor Greenstein and his colleagues believe they are the first to show a general tendency toward agglomeration in patenting across industries and patent classes.


Professor Greenstein will chair a second session as well. During the Investment and Technology Adoption session, Professor Greenstein will facilitate discussions on broadband markets with "Investment, Subsidies, and Universal Service: Broadband Internet in the United States" by Kyle Wilson and "Strategic Technology Adoption and Deterrence in the U.S. Local Broadband Markets" by Tedi Skiti. Finally, during the Determinants and Effects of Innovation session, Professor Greenstein will discuss Jordi Jaumandreu and Shuheng Lin’s paper, “Innovation and Prices” which investigates the impact of process and product innovations on the prices set by firms.


Shane Greenstein is the MBA Class of 1957 Professor of Business Administration and co-chair of the HBS Digital Initiative. He teaches in the Technology, Operations and Management Unit. Professor Greenstein is also co-director of the program on the economics of digitization at The National Bureau of Economic Research. Encompassing a wide array of questions about computing, communication, and Internet markets, Professor Greenstein’s research extends from economic measurement and analysis to broader issues.


The Industrial Organization Society (IOS) was founded in 1972 by Stanley Boyle, working closely with Willard Mueller. The original aim of the IOS was to promote research on antitrust policy, regulatory policy, and competition and market power in real-world markets. Since 2003, the IOS has sponsored an annual International Industrial Organization Conference in order to accommodate the needs and interests of the burgeoning field.