Competition Law has spread from country to country at a rapid rate and there are now over one hundred jurisdictions with established competition laws. That is why students from all over the world come to King's to study Competition Law.
We have long-standing relationships with practitioners in these countries and are proud of the range and depth of our contacts. Our faculty of competition lawyers, economists and officials remain close to competition law cases in the UK, EU and beyond. This is part of what makes King's such an exciting atmosphere in which to study.
You will find that Competition Law at The Dickson Poon School of Law is taught in a supportive environment that helps students develop their individual interest in the subject. We are also extremely proud of the ongoing contact we have with many of our students after they graduate and welcome them back at regular events.
Many members of The Dickson Poon School of Law have made a significant contribution to Competition Law, have developed strong ties (both with regulators and law firms) and are influential in the area of Competition Law:
You need to study full- or half-modules (see module list below) worth 180 credits.
Each module is worth 40 credits (with half modules worth 20 credits). You will need to select modules of your choice that adds up to 120 credits in total.
To achieve the additional 60 credits you need to choose between:
The modules listed below are those related specifically to the LLM in Competition Law pathway. The general Master of Laws entry lists all available LLM modules.
In the first and second semester you study your selection of taught modules (half and full). These are in most cases assessed in the third semester (May/June) by written examination, or in some cases by the submission of an assessed essay.
Weekly two-hour seminar.
Indicative/suggested reading: Townley, Article 81 EC and Public Policy (2009) Hart Publishing,Oxford.
Most lawyers and competition authorities agree that the sole goal of Articles 101 and 102 TFEU is, and should be, consumer welfare; yet, many EU Courtjudgments suggest that other public policy goals are also relevant. Reflecting Dr Townley's book on the subject, the module considers the arguments for and against the incorporation of public policy goals (and why this matters to the outcome of cases); the state of the existing case law; and how public policy goals should best be incorporated in Article 101 TFEU, if they are relevant there.
The module is taught through a series of two-hour seminars, given by Chris Townley. There is a high degree of student participation in the classes. The module outline provides an array of references for further reading as well as sample questions for us all to ponder before each class. Students can also submit two essays which Chris will mark, grade and return with comments on how they might be improved. This should prove particularly useful for those not used to being examined in the UK system.
It is vital that students read in depth and understand the text and cases set as part of the seminar reading. This is an advanced competition law module, which is ideal for anyone with a good knowledge of European competition law, or those who plan to take one of the other competition law modules during their LLM, please see below for links to these modules.
A 2-hour examination will be set, requiring the student to answer 2 questions. The examination is closed-book. There will be ample opportunity to answer exam-style questions throughout the course.
The European Union has taken, and continues to take, significant measures designed to liberalise certain network-based sectors. In opening up those sectors to greater competition, the European Commission has delegated a wide range of regulatory powers to National Regulatory Authorities, who work closely with National Competition Authorities in order to achieve the optimum competitive balance most likely to be able to deliver consumer welfare. That balance is often very difficult to manage, especially the delicate matters of economic judgement that need to be made in relation to the legality of particular practices and the strategically important political initiatives that are undertaken in the affected sectors which can distort the competitive process between Member States.
The module takes an inter-disciplinary approach in exploring how the balance between law and economics on the one hand, and ex post and ex ante rules on the other, is struck, both at the theoretical level and in its practical application across key sectors. You explore legal, economic and public policy principles that affect regulated sectors, and examine the application of those principles to specific sectors such as electronic communications, media, air transport and energy (gas and electricity). Specialist subjects such as financial services, water and postal services are also often considered by guest lecturers.
Recent Article 102 TFEU case-law is particularly relevant here, as are a range of Sector Enquiries that have been conducted by the European Commission (often reflected in public consultations run at Member State level). Moreover, a growing body of administrative practice in the field of merger control explores how behavioural remedies can be applied in connection with mergers in the affected sectors, and the appropriate regulatory institutions that can best assure their proper implementation.
The object of the module is to prepare students for the sorts of issues likely to arise in their home jurisdictions and at Community level in these areas. Most importantly, there will be an emphasis on the evolutionary aspects of policymaking and competition law enforcement in these sectors, given the varying ownership structures and rules in different jurisdictions. As this is an advanced module, previous knowledge of the subject would be preferred, but is not required.
The module is taught through lectures, primarily by leading practitioners specialising in the applications of competition law and regulation to particular sectors. The lectures are supplemented by specialist seminars delivered by economists and regulators, each of whom provides an alternative perspective on the problems already covered in the lectures. You are encouraged to actively engage with the issues being addressed. At least one Moot Court will be held on a topic of interest.
A three-hour written examination will be set. You will be able to answer by focusing on two specific areas of regulation, for example energy or communications regulation (although if students prefer to discuss more areas they can).
Indicative/suggested reading: Neils, Jenkins and Kavanagh
Economics for Competition Lawyers (Oxford University Press 2011).
The overall aim is to ensure that students have an appreciation of the underlying economics employed in anti-trust cases. The emphasis is on the practical application of economics rather than pure theory. On completing the module, you should have an understanding of the economics used in anti-trust case analysis and be aware of both the strengths and weaknesses in its application both theoretically and empirically. A key aim is that you will have an understanding of the economic tools used by anti-trust economists and to be able to engage in a dialogue with these economists.
No previous knowledge of economics is required. Whilst much of the technical economic literature is mathematical, the module will not require an advanced knowledge of mathematics. The approach to formal theory will, as far as possible, be diagrammatical.
Given the extent of the material that needs to be covered, the bulk of the lectures are devoted to formal teaching, however the style will be both informal and interactive, questions are encouraged. The economics will be illustrated by reference to actual cases. By its nature the module proceeds by considering a series of building blocks which together make up the toolkit typically used by economists in anti-trust cases. The slides presented in each seminar will be posted in advance on KEATS (Moodle). In addition, a discussion forum will be set up so that students can ask questions (anonymously if preferred) which will be answered prior to the next seminar and posted on KEATS.
EU public procurement law has emerged as a major area of practice for EU lawyers, bolstered by the increased use of PFI contracts, the introduction of new enforcement procedures in 2009 and a growing volume of cases before the European and Member State courts. This module offers a comprehensive grounding in the EU regime. It covers:
No previous knowledge of the subject is required.
The EU regulation of public undertakings and EU state aid law are increasingly important parts of EU competition law. The case law at national and European levels is growing in both number and importance, particularly of late. The reasons for this increasing focus on public intervention in the economy are numerous and varied but they primarily relate to the impact of such intervention on the completion of the internal market and the current liberalization and privatisation processes. The module focuses on the relevant provisions of the Treaty, most notably Articles 86, 87 and 88; analysing them (and the resulting case law/ decisions) through various legal, political and economic prisms. For more details please see the module outline at the bottom of this page. No previous knowledge of the subject is required.
The module is taught in seminars; you are encouraged to actively engage with the issues being addressed.
The aim of the module is to teach the basic provisions of EU competition law; to study the law in its economic and market context; and to consider particular business phenomena - distribution agreements, licences of intellectual property rights, cartels, joint ventures etc. - against the backdrop of the EU Treaty generally and Articles 101 and 102 and the EU Merger Regulation in particular. No previous knowledge of the subject is required.
Throughout the academic year there will be a series of tutorials, given by David Bailey, which follow the course of seminars given by Richard Whish. The tutorials are intended to assist your understanding of the subject in general and its practical application to problem questions in particular. A separate tutorials handout will be provided.
The teachers of this module expect a high degree of participation by all students. It is not intended, in general, to provide lectures except where, for particular reasons, it may be helpful to do so. At each seminar, discussion will be encouraged and expected. You are required to have prepared answers to the questions asked at the end of each seminar handout.
This module examines the US federal antitrust laws, the world's oldest sophisticated competition regime. You study the core antitrust provisions, chart the evolution of the law and examine the different factors which have led the law to its current provisions. The module introduces the laws, their objectives and the enforcement system prior to considering how they apply to horizontal and vertical agreements and unilateral conduct. No previous knowledge of the subject is required.
The module is taught in seminars; you are encouraged to actively engage with the issues being addressed.
The basic requirement for admission to the LLM programme is a recognised first degree in law (or a degree with at least 70% law content) of at least high upper second class honours standard or an equivalent overseas qualification. Exceptionally, you may be considered where a comparable academic level has been achieved through other graduate studies and where work or experience has made you a suitable candidate for the LLM. A pdf download of entry requirements by region is available from the further information tab.
Part time applicants: please note that The Dickson Poon School of Law requires that part time students applying to a postgraduate law programme are working for a minimum of 22 hours per week. You will be asked to supply an official letter from your employer stating that you work for at least 22 hours or more per week.
Applications must be made online using King's online application portal. Applications may be submitted from 1 October 2012.
Please see the LLM FAQ's pdf document for further information on the LLM application process.
Please see the LLM FAQ's pdf document for further information on how to complete your application.
LLM student: 2009-10
Associate at Herbert Smith LLP
I joined Herbert Smith LLP as an Associate, soon after completing an LLM at King's College London. I am based in the Brussels office and practise UK, EU and Competition Law.
I chose to do my LLM at King's because it was one of the only LLM programmes to offer a competition-law specific LLM and it was clear to me that it was the best regarded competition LLM available. The course is structured so that you learn the foundations of EU competition law, but also have the opportunity to study inter-related topics such as economics and US antitrust. This meant that although I had practised competition law before (I already had 2 years’ experience as a competition lawyer), I was able to further develop my knowledge by studying these complementary topics, in addition to covering new areas of competition law that I had not yet experienced in my career to date.
At King's you will really feel part of the competition community. There is the opportunity to attend guest lectures by leading practioners and a number of the other LLM students come from competition backgrounds too. You are sure to meet lots of interesting people who will not only become your friends but will become part of your competition network in the future. I had a fantastic year and would advise anyone interested in competition law to apply!
LLM student: 2010-11
Legal trainee at the Brussels office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP.
When choosing a university for my postgraduate studies, two things were of importance to me: academia and further career possibilities following the studies.
Having chosen King’s for an LLM in Competition Law, I can confidently state, it appeared to be the optimal decision. King’s offers an extraordinary variety of competition law related modules that are taught by only top-class professors and practitioners thereby allowing the students to put a reliable cornerstone for further practice. Besides this, King’s is very rich in various seminars and conferences that are an excellent bonus accompanying an already versatile programme along.
In addition to the academic excellence that King’s possesses, it also offers plenty of job opportunities. The internationally recognised professors and practitioners teaching at King’s provide for an extensive network and numerous possibilities of employment throughout Europe and beyond. I myself started my present work in a law firm in Brussels by virtue of having been taught by one of King’s visiting professors.
Studying at King’s is a great and very tangible experience, as well as pleasure of being in the heart of London in one of the most prestigious and beautiful law schools.