EU Competition Law (Academic Year 2018/2019)

General overview

The 42-hour course was held from mid-February to early May 2019, with a regular attendance from 30 students approximately. Near the course’s end, some students actively participated by delivering presentations on prominent EU competition law cases that were dealt with during the lectures, and this activity was taken into account as part of the final evaluation.


Learning outcomes

The course of EU Competition Law is provided as a Jean Monnet Module, selected by the DG Education and Culture of the European Commission within the Call for proposals 2017 – EAC/A03/2016 in consideration of the special relevance of this subject within the EU policies. It is aimed at providing the students with legal tools and methodologies that are needed for a specialized and deepened study of this law branch, that represents one of the main fields of intervention of the European Union. Its main focus is therefore making students understand the legal tools of this area of law, whose knowledge, both from a public and private perspective, is increasingly required to legal consultants called to advise undertakings operating on a regular basis in a cross-border dimension in order to avoid breaches of EU competition law.
The main EU acts will be thoroughly examined, in particular Regulation No 1/2003 on the application of present Arts. 101-102 TFEU and Directive 2014/104 on actions for damages for infringements of competition law, implemented in Italy by the recent legislative decree No 3/2017. In addition, provisions on State aids will be analyzed in the light of Regulation No 2015/1589, so called procedural regulation, as well as the discipline on mergers between undertakings.
After introducing the subject matter of the above-mentioned acts, the course implements a practice-oriented perspective by analyzing the relevant international and domestic case law, as well as by solving actual cases. This kind of perspective is intended to better clarify the real repercussions on the national and European economic fabric of a subject that over the decades acquired a fundamental role for the correct functioning of the internal market.
The tailor-made structure of the course enables students to obtain the knowledge of the different issues related to competition law and understand the practical effects of a law field that, in relation to the rules necessary for the functioning of the internal market, represents one the exclusive competences of the European Union.

At the end of the course the student should be able to:

  • know and understand the main issues of EU competition law;
  • carry critical analysis with respect to the issues discussed in the course;
  • express orally the acquired knowledge and carry personal critical analysis, also showing command of the legal jargon.



The course analyses the competition rules applying both to undertakings and Member States, both from a public and private perspective.
In summary, the following topics will be covered.

  • COMPETITION RULES APPLYING TO UNDERTAKINGS: arts. 101-102 TFEU on the agreements between undertakings and the abuse of dominant position with special regard to the Microsoft, Google and Intel cases; Regulation No 1/2003, the modernization of EU competition law and the role of the Commission and the national competition authorities; Regulation No 773/2004, the competition procedures before the Commission and the undertakings’ rights of defence; the competition procedures before the Italian national authority; compliance programmes, settlements and leniency programmes; the economic analysis underneath a competition case; competition law applied to the pharmaceutical industry: Astra-Zeneca and Roche-Novartis cases; Directive No 2014/104, actions for damages for infringements of competition law and the procedural tool for the protection of damaged parties; the application of Arts. 101-102 TFEU at an Italian level; private international law issues and the application of Bruselles Ia and Rome II Regulation in cross-border damages actions.
  • COMPETITION RULES APPLYING TO MEMBER STATES: arts. 107-108 TFEU; Regulation No 2015/1589 and the procedure for the assessment of the compatibility of a national measure; illegal, incompatible and abusive aids; damage compensation.



Lectures are taught in Italian.
Classes are held in the form of seminars and, therefore, the teaching methods need to be distinguished between attending and non-attending students.
As for attending students, the teaching comprises both lectures focused on the study of the basic notions and legal sources regarding European competition law and practical lectures during which the relevant case law is discussed and actual cases are solved.
During the lessons the professor avails herself of powerpoint presentations.
Moreover, during the course some lectures are by competition law experts with the aim of deepening specific topics that are particularly relevant in the given law field. In particular, these lessons are delivered by other Italian and foreign academics, an officer from the Italian competition authority and a competition adviser from the Intesa SanPaolo group. The contributions of these professional profiles is intended to provide students with the complete framework of all the aspects, both theoretical and practical, that are related to EU competition law.
The teaching materials used during the course (legal texts and selected case law) are provided to the students through the University e-learning platform.
As for non-attending students, the teaching methods consist in the study of the proposed textbook (also taking into account the more recent legislative updates), to which the teacher can offer her support.
Besides the lectures of the course, within the activities of the Jean Monnet Module are also comprised complimentary optional workshops led by an expert competition law scholar where are simulated practical cases derived from real competition caselaw.



  • F. GHEZZI, G. OLIVIERI, Diritto antitrust, Giappichelli, Torino, 2013;
  • L. DANIELE, Diritto del mercato unico europeo, Giuffrè, Milano, 2016, pp. 337-372;
  • P. IANNUCCELLI, La responsabilità delle imprese nel diritto della concorrenza dell’Unione europea, Giuffrè, Milano, 2015, limitatamente alle pp. 107-155.

For attending students, the exam ascertains their preparation on the topics covered during the lectures and can be prepared on the notes taken and the materials distributed in class and on the e-learning platform. Non-attending students shall prepare the exam on all the textbooks indicated above.

Erasmus students may choose to take the exam:
– orally in Italian, studying on the same textbooks and according to the same course syllabus as Italian students;
– orally in English, studying on the following textbook: M. LORENZ, An Introduction to EU Competition Law, Cambridge University Press, 2013.


Assessment methods and criteria

The oral test is required for both Italian and Erasmus students, and covers the whole course’s programme.

For both attending and non-attending students, the examination is aimed at assessing:
– the acquired knowledge and the ability of linking different topics;
– the legal reasoning regarding the specific law field on which the course focuses;
– language and legal terminology skills;
– analytical and argumentative abilities.

For attending students the exam is be the result of an oral interview that also takes into account optional papers presented in class and/or the simulations done during the complimentary workshops.


For further information please visit the course’s page on the Law Department website.