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A Call to Arms: Proposing the Use of Social Science Methods in Transnational Competition Law


Sven Gallasch and Jeremy Kingsley

Competition law enforcement is one of the cornerstones of sound business regulation; yet it faces a problem in the transnational context. Whereas transnational commerce seamlessly transcends borders, competition law has jurisdictional roots, lacking a true transnational response. Global frictions due to the enforcement of divergent domestic laws and policies seem inevitable yet are surprisingly rare. We argue this phenomenon cannot be fully explained by a doctrinal analysis of the global efforts towards policy or legal convergence. Instead, the focus should be on the competition law officials who operationalise the law in a transnational context. This ‘human element’ of the inquiry must embrace qualitative research methods, such as ethnographic studies commonly used in legal anthropology, to develop a comprehensive legal analysis in this context.

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2024 47(1) UNSWLJ 282: