Jingchuan Pu and Hsing Kenneth Cheng.

Research by Warrington faculty nominated for Antitrust Writing Awards

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – A paper by Jingchuan Pu and John B. Higdon Eminent Scholar Chair Hsing Kenneth Cheng has been nominated for this year’s Antitrust Writing Award.

The paper, “Impact of Own Brand Product Introduction on Optimal Pricing Models for Platform and Incumbent Sellers,” meets the qualifications for the General Economics subcategory of the award and is available for voting until April 5.

“The nomination indicates that our study is noticed by not only practitioners and scholars from business schools, but also by those from the antitrust law and economics fields,” said Pu and Cheng.

Pu and Cheng’s paper, co-authored with Kyung Sung Jung and Young Kwark, is already acclaimed, having been published by Information Systems Research in 2023. The study explores policies that can better protect small businesses on a large e-commerce platform when they face competitions from own brands of the platform itself, such as Amazon.com.

Ensuring fair competition on online platforms is pressing issue. Putting a shoe produced by a small company against the shoes sold by Amazon’s own brands, for example, brings up concerns about self-preferential treatment and unfair advantages, according to Pu and Cheng. These concerns have reached the United States Congress, which has proposed two antitrust legislation bills aiming to resolve the issue. Pu and Cheng’s paper discusses different solutions and options, diving into the practicalities of equality in an online platform and taking into account the platform’s strategical behaviors.

“Our study is among the first to help antitrust policymakers 1) comprehensively understand the effect of an e-commerce platform’s introduction of own brand product on the incumbent sellers and 2) ascertain the effectiveness of proposed policies aimed at mitigating the threat from the platform’s own brand to incumbent sellers,” they explained.

The Antitrust Writing Awards promote competition scholarship by selecting the best articles published in antitrust or law and economics fields. They are organized by the George Washington University and Concurrences, an independent legal publisher dedicated to antitrust law and competitive economics. Articles are nominated by Concurrences’ editorial committee of renowned professionals and made available to the public for conclusive selection.

Vote for Pu and Cheng’s paper through the Concurrences webpage, following the “Academic Articles” category to find their work.