Competition

Algorithms and collusion

 

The combination of data with technologically advanced tools such as pricing algorithms and machine learning is increasingly changing the competitive landscape in the digital markets. There is a growing number of firms using computer algorithms to improve their pricing models, customise services and predict market trends, which could generate efficiencies. However, the widespread usage of algorithms could also pose possible anti-competitive effects by making it easier for firms to achieve and sustain collusion without any formal agreement or human interaction.

In June 2017 the OECD held a roundtable on "Algorithms and Collusion" as a part of the wider work stream on competition in the digital economy, in order to discuss some of the challenges raised by algorithms. Among other topics, the roundtable addressed the question of whether antitrust agencies should reconsider the traditional antitrust concepts of agreement and tacit collusion, and whether any antitrust liability can be imposed on the algorithms’ creators and users. All related presentations and papers can be found on this page. 

Read the OECD Background paper.

Access the full list of Competition Policy Roundtables

 OECD BACKGROUND PAPER • NOTE DE RÉFÉRENCE

 JUNE 2017 SESSION INFORMATION

INVITED SPEAKERS AND PAPERS

Ariel EZRACHI Bio
Director of the centre for competition law and policy, Oxford University, UK presenting 
Algorithmic Collusion: Problems and Counter-Measures

Michal GAL Bio
Professor of Law at University of Haifa Law School, Israel presenting
Algorithmic-facilitated coordination

Avigdor GAL Bio
Full Professor, Faculty of Industrial Engineering & Management, Technion, Israel presenting
It's a feature, not a bug: on learning algorithms and what they teach us

PAPERS FROM PARTICIPANTS

EU

Italy

Russia

Singapore

Ukraine

United Kingdom

United States

BIAC

DOCUMENTS AND LINKS

OECD's Going digital project website

Big data: bringing competition to the digital era (2016)

Price discrimination (2016)

Oligopoly Markets (2015)

The Digital Economy (2012)

Unilateral Disclosure of Information with Anticompetitive Effects (2012)

Price Transparency (2001)

Access the full list of Competition Policy Roundtables 

PRESENTATIONS

 

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