GMU Graduate Industrial Organization I

Economics 844-001 (#73016), meets 7:20-10:00pm, Tuesday, during Fall 2022, in Carow Hall main room.

Instructor: Robin D. Hanson, Assoc. Professor, Economics (,
Office Hours: Officially Tuesdays 5-7p, but I'm available at far more times; email me.

Catalog Entry:

Econ 844 Industrial Organization and Public Policy I (3:3:0). Prerequisite: ECON 611 or permission of instructor. Structure of American industry and underlying determinants. Analysis of structure and conduct on industrial performance in light of theory and empirical evidence. Rational antitrust policy and analysis of impact on structure and performance.
Class Concept
By grad school, students know the drill cold: read assignments, hear lectures, do homework, and spit it all back on the exam. Problem is, just then the game changes from grades to papers; few will care about your grades, compared to your research papers, written and published. A research paper is not a term paper, and can't be dashed off the weekend before it is due. A research paper does not offer a broad overview; it says something specific and new, even if minor, that fits in a context of other research papers.

My class is designed for this transition. Instead of covering many topics briefly, we cover fewer deeper. The research paper is half your grade, and can be all if you want. You must choose a model paper early in the semeseter, write a referee report on it, and present it in class. Then meeting with me frequently one on one, we look for and then create some variation on that model paper.

Assignments: Schedule
Week Shy ChapterLecture Topics
23 Aug2,3 Overview and Lockin Look for Model Paper
30 Aug4,5,6 Homogeneous Products & Free Entry
6 Sep7 Differentiated Products
13 Sep12 Quality and Regulation
20 Sep Paper Presentations
27 Sep10 Networks and Standards
4 Oct No Class
11 Oct No Class
18 Oct11,16 Ads and Search
25 Oct TBD
1 Nov9 Research and Development
8 Nov Incentives
14 Nov TBD
24 Nov Organization Information Systems
29 Nov TBD
13 Dec 7:30-10:15pm, Final Presentations, papers due
On the web page, this links to a page of sources, most of which have links.
Suggested Texts:
Oz Shy, Industrial Organization, Theory and Applications, MIT Press, ISBN 0-262-69179-5, 1996. (errata)
Jean Tirole, The Theory of Industrial Organization, MIT Press, ISBN 0-262-20071-6, 1994.
Dennis Carlton and Jeffrey Perloff, Modern Industrial Organization, Forth Edition, Addison-Wesley, ISBN: 0-321-18023-2, 2005.