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PhD thesis: The theory of collusion

15 September 2009

Voluntary cooperation between independent actors typically promotes social welfare. But collusion, which can be defined as the overt or tacit coordination between firms on one or more strategic variables such as price or advertising, is an important exception to this principle.

When two or more firms coordinate on a high price, they may increase their joint profits, but typically ignore the negative externality they impose on consumers. As a result, collusion between firms has, in general, a negative impact on social welfare. This is why collusive agreements are subject to legal prosecution in the United States, member states of the European Union, Canada, and many other countries.

Many important aspects of collusion are still poorly understood. Bastiaan Overvest's thesis therefore aims to shed light on a few of those aspects. Using existing game-theoretic models when possible and proposing new frameworks when necessary, the chapters in his thesis contribute to a better understanding of cartels. Each chapter is intended to appeal to both academics and economists at antitrust authorities or in policy circles.

Curriculum vitae
Bastiaan M. Overvest (Leeuwarden, 1980) studied economics in Groningen and conducted his PhD research at SOM research school of the Faculty of Economics and Business. He will be awarded his PhD on 24 September 2009 (2.45pm). His thesis supervisor is prof.dr. J.L. Moraga-Gonzalez and the thesis title is: Essays on the theory of collusion. Overvest currently works at the 'Nederlandse Mededingingsautoriteit' (NMa).

Last modified:31 January 2018 11.53 a.m.

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