The main research priority of our chair is antitrust law and the law against unfair competition. How do markets function? What is the right framework for competition in the 21st century? How do we shape the future of the digitised economy? What is the role of the law?
Lawyers need to respond to radical changes in markets due to globalisation and digitalisation. Promoting core values such as free competition, ensuring efficiency and an innovation-friendly environment for entrepreneurs is key for the law. Our research projects and publications often deal with issues of the platform economy, data science and innovation.
Rupprecht Podszun has promoted the “more technological approach“ when applying competition and IP law. It is inspired by the „more economic approach“, which had a big impact on competition law in recent years. We engage in discussions of competition policy and law on the European and the national level, commenting on decisions of the European Commission and the Bundeskartellamt (Federal Cartel Office). We are also often called to take a stand in parliamentary hearings or other high-profile conferences and workshops. Our blog D’Kart (you should definitely subscribe to it: www.d-kart.de!) is the leading German antitrust blog.
Another cornerstone of a modern market economy is the principle of fairness. Rupprecht sketched this idea in “FairEconomy – Crises, Culture, Competition and the Role of Law“ together with Wolfgang Fikentscher and Philipp Hacker.
Rupprecht authors the sections on two fundamental provisions of the German act against unfair competition in a leading commentary for practitioners.
In the field of unfair commercial practices, we have a strong voice regarding institutional and procedural issues. Together with Frauke Henning-Bodewig and Christoph Busch, we provided the 2018 expert opinion for the Federal Ministry of Economics on the enforcement of the Unfair Commercial Practices Directive in Germany.
One of our projects in the field of enforcement and institutions is the project “D’Law”: We call for a strengthening of courts for business litigation. Many of our proposals were taken up by the Ministry of Justice and are currently in the legislative arena.
The cooperation with scholars from other disciplines – especially economists – is essential to keep improving the market economy. In competition law our key sectors of interest are media, IT and telecommunication. Furthermore, we often deal with topics at the intersection of Intellectual Property law (IP) and competition (patents, trademarks, copyright).
Regarding methodology we strive for a rigid design of research projects, yet we are very open for non-doctrinal approaches such as empirical work. In his postdoctoral thesis (Habilitation) „Wirtschaftsordnung durch Zivilgerichte – Evolution und Legitimation der Rechtsprechung in deregulierten Branchen“ (“Civil Courts and The Economic Order. Evolution and Legitimacy of Judicial Decisions in Deregulated Sectors”) Rupprecht used an evolutionary approach to law.
All our research is characterised by solving actual problems, by practical relevance, the understanding of economic context, a sense for questions of implementation and an awareness for European and international aspects.
Finally, from time to time, Rupprecht loves to deal with legal issues of theatre.