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Course two: Comparative Media Ownership Regulation

This course will explore the market, legal and regulatory trends shaping the media and communications sector in India and internationally.

Competition and diversity in media and communications are fundamental to a healthy economy and democracy. In India and internationally, there is no consensus on the exact manner and scope of interventions that are appropriate to protect competition and pluralism in media markets.

Many emerging economies including India are seeking to adopt their own regulation in this area, taking their lead from the UK. The issues have been brought into sharp focus in India in recent years. 

Firstly, the enactment and implementation of modern - but sector neutral - competition law under the Competition Act 2002 has caused a step change in regulation towards an economics and effects-based approach. Secondly, the India telecoms regulator has launched controversial reform proposals to apply a media-specific approach to ownership regulation.

The challenges of regulating media ownership and plurality have been given renewed focus by Walt Disney Company's proposed purchase of 21st Century Fox. This has been heralded as a deal that will reshape the media landscape, and is taking place against an ongoing regulatory review in the UK of Fox's planned takeover of Sky.

The course will explore: 

  • Guiding principles and fundamental concepts of competition law and regulation in the media
  • Market definition in the media sector
  • Competition law and the media: EU and Indian perspectives
  • Merger control and media plurality
  • Vertical integration in the media sector and its effect on competition
  • Media regulation and the cable sector: Case studies and international comparisons
  • Impact of the Internet
  • The regulatory reform agenda

Key benefits you will gain from this course:

  • Insights from the Indian and international experience in this fast-moving and high profile area
  • Interactive case studies
  • Experience and presentation from a leading practitioner and author in the field, Suzanne Rab, who has advised on some of the largest media deals internationally, and is author of leading texts on competition law and regulation including 'Media Ownership and Control: Law, Economics and Policy in an Indian and International Context' (Hart Studies in Competition Law, 2014)
  • Certificate of Completion upon satisfactory completion of the course and a pass on the course test
  • Opportunity to combine the course with course one (EU and Indian Competition Law) and course three (Hong Kong Competition Law)
Duration: Five evening lectures (days one to five), plus one day workshop on day six

The course schedule

Seminars one to five will take place on five consecutive days from Monday 18 June 2018 to Friday 22 June 2018 (6pm - 7pm).

Seminars six to ten will be delivered on Saturday 23 June over a full day (9am - 5pm).

The programme comprises of the following seminars:

  1. The Context: Market, legal and regulatory trends shaping the media and communications sector in India and internationally
  2. Policy: Guiding principles and fundamental concepts of competition law and regulation in the media
  3. Media ownership and control: Merger control and media plurality
  4. Market definition in the media sector
  5. Competition law and the media: EU
  6. Competition law and the media: India
  7. Vertical integration in the media sector
  8. Impact of the Internet
  9. Media regulation and the cable sector: Case studies and international comparisons
  10. Regulatory reform: Insights from the international experience

Evening seminar programme (18 to 22 June)


Timing  Session 
18 June, 6pm - 7pm  1. The Context: Market, legal and regulatory trends shaping the media and communications sector in India and internationally 
19 June, 6pm - 7pm  2. Policy: Guiding principles and fundamental concepts of competition law and regulation in the media 
20 June, 6pm - 7pm
This session will take place at a leading Chambers in Lincoln's Inn, London 
3. Media ownership and control: Merger control and media plurality 
21 June, 6pm - 7pm  4. Market definition in the media sector 
22 June, 6pm - 7pm  5. Competition law and the media: EU 
22 June, 7.30pm arrival for 8pm start  Week one course dinner
All participants in courses one and two will be able to attend the week one course dinner 

Day school: 23 June


Timing  Session 
9am - 10am  6. Competition law and the media: India 
10am - 11.30am  7. Vertical integration in the media sector 
11.30am - 12pm  Break 
12pm - 1pm  8. Impact of the Internet 
1pm - 2pm  Lunch 
2pm - 3.30pm  9. Media regulation and the cable sector: Case studies and international comparisons 
3.30pm - 4pm  Break 
4pm - 5pm  10. Regulatory reform: Insights from the international experience
  Concluding remarks 

Course test

Marked essay. Deadline for submission by email: Midnight on 24 June

Candidates will submit a 1000 word essay to be prepared in their private study time. A choice of five essay topics will be made available at the end of the course on day six.

The Certificate of Completion will be awarded on achieving 60 marks or more.