Thursday, May 30, 2013

Kirkwood, Connor, and Lande Named 2013 Winners of Jerry S. Cohen Award for Antitrust Scholarship

Posted by D. Daniel Sokol

I am pleased to announce the winners of the AAI Jerry Cohen Award.  From the AAI press release:

John B Kirkwood, John M. Connor, and Robert H. Lande have been selected as the recipients of the 11th annual Jerry S. Cohen Award for the best antitrust scholarship of 2012.

The award was created through a trust established in honor of the late Jerry S. Cohen, an outstanding trial lawyer and antitrust writer.  It is  administered by the law firm he founded, Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll.  The award is given each year to the best antitrust writing during the prior year that is consistent with the following standards established by the Board of Trustees of the Jerry S. Cohen Memorial Fund: 

To be considered eligible and selected for the Award, submissions should reflect a concern for principles of economic justice, the dispersal of economic power, the maintenance of effective limitations upon economic power or the federal statutes designed to protect society from various forms of anticompetitive activity. Submissions should reflect an awareness of the human and social impacts of economic institutions upon individuals, small businesses and other institutions necessary to the maintenance of a just and humane society--values and concerns Jerry S. Cohen dedicated his life and work to fostering.  Submissions may address substantive, procedural or evidentiary matters that reflect these values and concerns.

The award selection committee this year consisted of Warren Grimes, Roger Noll, Ann Yahner, Charles Goodwin, and Daniel Small.

Kirkwood, Connor, and Lande will receive their awards during the gala luncheon at the American Antitrust Institute’s Annual Conference on June 12 at the National Press Club in Washington.  Held at the National Press Club in Washington D.C., the annual conference is attended by leaders of the antitrust community including academics, lawyers, economists and agency and Capitol Hill staff.  Visit  to view the agenda and to register.

Kirkwood's October 2012 article "Powerful Buyers and Merger Enforcement" (92 B.U.L. Rev. 1485) provides a comprehensive analysis of the role of buyer power in merger enforcement.  It discusses the traditional approach to buyer mergers, suggesting modifications to better reflect the true dynamics of buyer power. Most important, it recommends that courts and enforcement agencies halt mergers that enhance anticompetitive countervailing power. Because many buyer combinations that increase such power are beneficial, the Article identifies ten situations in which a merger that augments countervailing power would reduce competition and diminish the welfare of consumers, suppliers, or society.

Connor and Lande penned "Cartels as Rational Business Strategy: Crime Pays" (34 Cardozo L. Rev. 427) because, until now, no one has ever seriously attempted to analyze whether cartel sanctions are at the optimal level. The article demonstrates that the combined level of U.S. cartel sanctions (including private and government enforcement) has been only 9% to 21% as large as it should be to protect potential victims of cartelization optimally.  It concludes, "Cartels are a crime that, on average, pays....In fact, it pays very well."

The committee selected two outstanding articles as Honorable Mentions:

  • “Cartels, Corporate Compliance and What Practitioners Really Think About Enforcement” by D. Daniel Sokol (78 Antitrust L. J. 201)
  • “Solving the Patent Settlement Puzzle” by Einer Elhauge and Alex Krueger (91 Tex. L. Rev. 283)

Past winners of the award are available here.

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