September 13, 2018 - Georgetown hosts FTC's first hearings on Competition and Consumer Protection in the 21st Century

On September 13, Georgetown hosted the first of the FTC's hearings on Competition and Consumer Protection in the 21st Century. Among a range of distinguished speakers, the event included Georgetown Professors David Vladeck, former Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection, and Howard Shelanski, former Head of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs and former Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Economics.

The hearing was the first in a series the FTC will hold in the coming months to examine how changes in the economy, evolving business practices, new technologies, and international developments impact enforcement priorities and the landscape for competition and consumer protection law.

The session’s agenda included:

  • The current landscape of competition and consumer protection law and policy

  • Whether the U.S. economy has become more concentrated and less competitive

  • The regulation of consumer data

  • Antitrust law and the consumer welfare standard

  • The analysis of vertical mergers

In opening remarks, Chairman Joe Simons explained his hope that the hearings, among other goals, will improve consensus on antitrust. Professor Vladeck stressed the need to strengthen the FTC's expertise and tools to better address the challenges presented by new technologies.

You can see coverage from the hearing on Twitter at #FTChearings, and the video recording of the event is available here.

  The FTC’s Bilal Sayyed (l) moderates a panel with former Asst. Attorney General for Antitrust James Rill, former Chair of the Council of Economic Advisors Jason Furman, former FTC Commissioner Tim Muris, Alysa Hutnik, Janet McDavid and Professor David Vladeck

The FTC’s Bilal Sayyed (l) moderates a panel with former Asst. Attorney General for Antitrust James Rill, former Chair of the Council of Economic Advisors Jason Furman, former FTC Commissioner Tim Muris, Alysa Hutnik, Janet McDavid and Professor David Vladeck