Regulating platforms and ecosystems

New firms have significant power and wealth, with implications for competition, the economy, and society

Regulating platforms 1140 by 346

Digital technologies and modular production methods have led to the emergence of a new generation of global leaders who cement their market position by orchestrating digital platforms and ecosystems of complementors, offering them new ways to create and capture value that often transcend the boundaries of existing sectors.

This is the principal introductory observation by Professor Michael G. Jacobides, the Sir Donald Gordon Professor of Entrepreneurship and Innovation at LBS, in his Industrial and Corporate Change | Oxford Academic paper, Regulating Platforms and Ecosystems. Professor Jacobides and his co-author, UCL Professor Ioannis Lianos, have had their paper highly commended by the Financial Times in this year’s Responsible Business Education Awards, as has reported in the article, Academic research award: tipping point for action (FT, January 16, 2023).

The editors hoped to catalyse research and provide a fresh perspective in competition law, acknowledging the uncertainty surrounding how the dominance of Big Tech should be addressed. The paper recognises that with capital markets all too willing to invest in this new generation of global companies, and regulators unable to rein them in, such firms have been able to accumulate unprecedented power and wealth, with profound implications for competition, the economy, and society itself.