SITE Working Paper Series
What Do We Know about the Effectiveness of Leniency Policies? A Survey of the Empirical and Experimental Evidence
() and Giancarlo Spagnolo
Abstract: Over the last decade a large body of economic research has
emerged that has sought to empirically test the effectiveness of leniency
policies as tools to enhance the detection, prosecution and deterrence of
cartel conduct. This research has considerable potential value in assisting
competition authorities design optimal policies by having a better
understanding of the impact that such policies, their specific features and
manner of administration, have on the behaviour of cartel participants.
Some researchers have taken the approach of testing empirically the effects
of actual policies – predominantly those administered by the United States
Department of Justice (USDOJ) and the European Commission (EC) – while
others have tested different hypothetical policies in the lab. This section
reviews the key studies which have been undertaken to date, it highlights
the main findings and compares their results. After appreciating the main
contributions and limitations of these studies, it concludes with a general
assessment and an agenda for future research.
Keywords: Cartels; competition policy; Leniency Programme; (follow links to similar papers)
JEL-Codes: D43; K21; K42; L13; L40; L51; (follow links to similar papers)
24 pages, October 1, 2014
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