Preparing for resilience: analysing and treating risk

Resilience of infrastructure is moving up the policy agenda, according to a report published this year by the UK’s National Infrastructure Commission (NIC). The NIC considers resilience to be characterised by an ability to ‘Anticipate, Resist, Absorb, Recover, Adapt and Transform’. Dr Rupert Booth, Oxera Economic Adviser, examines the first element—‘Anticipate’. He considers the role of the economist in working with executives on the analysis and treatment of risk as the first step in creating a resilience strategy

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Looking forward to 2021

2020 has been a turbulent year in many ways, yet we have seen some incredible advances and positive changes. In our end-of-year video, we reflect on the resilience of our clients and colleagues, and reasons to be optimistic as...

RIIO-2 Final Determinations: how final?

Having published its Draft Determinations (DDs) in July 2020,1 on 8 December 2020, Ofgem published its Final Determinations (FDs) for the RIIO-2 price controls for the GB electricity transmission (ET), gas transmission (GT), and gas distribution (GD) sectors, and...

EU pharmaceutical strategy: innovative medicine?

The European Commission is setting out a road map of interlinked policies across various sectors, with the stated aims of: (i) improving outcomes for Europeans; (ii) increasing competition and the competitiveness of European businesses; and (iii) supporting European innovation....

Behavioural biases in the judiciary: food for thought?

Behavioural economics has taught us that human decision-making is not perfectly ‘rational’; so to what extent can we expect judges to be free from bias? We explore some recent literature on the topic and discuss potential implications. Although—as human beings—we can never be perfectly free from behavioural bias, our judicial processes can adopt measures to bolster fairness and accuracy in the decision-making process

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The risks of using algorithms in business: artificial price collusion

Increasingly, prices are set by algorithms rather than humans. Many competition authorities have voiced their concerns that this may enable firms (knowingly or otherwise) to avoid competitive pressure and collude. Exactly how would such algorithmic collusion work? And what can businesses and other organisations that use pricing algorithms expect from competition authorities in the future?

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Here to stay: regression analysis in follow-on cartel damages

Regression analysis is a powerful statistical tool that can be used to estimate the damages caused by competition law infringements. In recent years, this type of analysis has increasingly been used to quantify follow-on damages claims in Europe. However, this trend is not yet reflected in final judgments by national courts. Why is this the case, and how might this change in the future?

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The risks of using algorithms in business: artificial intelligence and real discrimination

Algorithms influence many aspects of our work and social lives. They affect what adverts we see, what shows we watch, and whether we get a job. As these tools become increasingly widespread, they pose new challenges to businesses. We look at concerns regarding the use of algorithms in areas where the role of computer programs and complex modelling has traditionally been limited, and consider whether AI might result in illegal discrimination

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The risks of using algorithms in business: demystifying AI

Today algorithms influence all aspects of our lives, from how much we pay for groceries and what adverts we see, to the decisions taken by health professionals. As these tools become increasingly widespread, they pose new challenges to businesses. In order to begin to ‘demystify’ algorithms and AI, we ask: what benefits and risks do they bring to the economy?

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