Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Academic Year
Semester 3 (Dissertation)

Course Delivery



Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment One assignment of 5,000 words  100%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

Display a knowledge and understanding of the process of enforcement in the context of the legal regulation of business cartels.

Display a knowledge and understanding of the operation of particular strategies of enforcement in this context.

Critically evaluate the policy and rules underlying these strategies and the effectiveness of such methods of legal control.

Display an ability to gain access to the relevant literature and material in this field and how to use them in a critical discussion of the subject.

Present critical and well-informed argument regarding the use of strategies of enforcement in the context of business cartels.


1. Challenges to effective cartel regulation: problems of evidence in relation to furtive business activities.

2. The legal character of anti-cartel investigations and sanctions, standards of proof, and the process of judicial review.

3. The economic context: the use of economic argument and market analysis in relation to evidential issues.

4. 'Offence' definition as a means of proving the case: the concept of the 'cartel as a whole'.

5. Methods of investigation, with particular reference to the use of 'dawn raids'.

6. The use of deterrent sanctions: the nature, level and impact of fines.

7. The operation of leniency programmes.

8. The criminalization of cartels.

9. Appeals against cartel decisions.

Brief description

The module will build upon the study of cartel regulation more generally by examining critically and in further detail the strategies of legal control and enforcement which have been adopted by regulatory agencies in Europe and elsewhere. The underlying problem of discovering and proving highly anti-competitice but secretive business activities will be considered with reference to a number of key enforcement strategies: methods of investigation; the construction of offence definition to aid the establishment of violations; the developemtn of leniency programmes to encourage the provision of evidence; the use of criminalization and the development of further deterrent sanctions. The legal control and review of these enforcement strategies will also be considered, with particular reference to the role of the European Court of Justice and Court of First Instance in dealing with appeals by cartel participants.

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number Through the study and analysis of quantitative research and data.
Communication Through the presentation of information and argument in written answers to questions.
Improving own Learning and Performance Through the independent study of the subject at a distance.
Information Technology Through the application of IT as an essential medium of learning, teaching and study.
Personal Development and Career planning Through a process of independent learning and use of the study and qualification for purposes of career development.
Problem solving Through the examination and discussion of actual and hypothetical examples of enforcement strategies.
Research skills Through the detailed study at advanced level of literature, legal material, official documentation and research findings on the subject.
Subject Specific Skills This module provides students with the opportunity to identify, analyse, evaluate and practice a series of skills with respect to Cartel Regulation.
Team work Team working skills will be encouraged and developed in group activities and discussions at the residential study schools.


This module is at CQFW Level 7