Volume 101 - Issue 6 Georgetown Law Journal

Chicago and Georgetown: An Essay in Honor of Robert Pitofsky

This Essay begins by laying out some of the core themes of Georgetown School of antitrust thinking. Overall, the Georgetown School is nondoctrinaire, flexible, and evidence based. It is strongly associated with government institutions without being explicitly interventionist in orientation. It takes a substantially different approach to “Type 1 error” than has prevailed for the last several decades. And it seeks to actively engage the problems presented by new forms of competition using the very robust tools of traditional antitrust analysis. Next we will examine select investigations, enforcement actions, and public statements from the emergence of the Georgetown School during the Clinton Federal Trade Commission through to today’s Obama Antitrust Division that reflect the application of Georgetown School thinking in a variety of policy areas, from vertical restraints to mergers to antitrust immunities. These examples illustrate less a unified field theory of antitrust than an effort (1) to capture and build upon an emerging, evidence-based consensus on a variety of core antitrust topics and (2) to contribute to the development of strong public institutions that have both the intellectual capital and the will to protect competition and therefore consumer welfare.

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