Firm Strategy and Competition

SAM15 Firm Strategy and Competition

  • Topics


    The course focuses on firms¿ different decision problems and strategic interaction between firms. The course will be based on various cases focusing on markets such as airlines, telecommunication, gasoline and the grocery sector. We will aim towards providing an understanding of how economics can be used to understand and predict firms¿ behaviour and strategic interaction. The main elements in competition policy rules will also be discussed. Thus, we will distinguish between legal and illegal behavior and thereby gain insight in business ethical issues.


    Some example of topics will be:


    Market definition

    Barriers to entry

    Cartel behaviour

    Pricing and price discrimination

    Product differentiation

    Mergers & acquisitions


  • Learning outcome

    Learning outcome

    After completion of the course a student will be able to:

    Have a broad knowledge about topics such as market definition, barriers to entry, cartel behavior, pricing and mergers & acquisitions

    Apply academic knowledge in order to understand strategic interaction between firms in a specific market

    Find, evaluate and refer to information and scholarly subject matter and present it in a manner that sheds light on a problem seen from a firm's perspective

    Distinguish and combine theory and factual data

    Identify and execute individual assignments within a group activit

  • Teaching


    Regular lectures

  • Recommended prerequisites

    Recommended prerequisites

    The course requires introductory knowledge in microeconomics, e.g., the SAM020/SAM2 micro course.

  • Credit reduction due to overlap

    Credit reduction due to overlap

    Overlap with VOA011

  • Requirements for course approval

    Requirements for course approval

    Two group based assignments, and all students must pass on both assignments. There will be a maximum of three students on each group.

  • Assessment


    Four hours written school exam, calculator not allowed. All answers must be written in English

  • Grading Scale

    Grading Scale

    Grading scale A - F

  • Computer tools

    Computer tools


  • Semester



  • Literature


    Dennis W. Carlton and Jeffrey M. Perloff, Modern Industrial Organization, Global Edition, 2015, Pearson, fourth edition (not all the chapters are required reading)


ECTS Credits
Teaching language

Course responsible

Simen Aardal Ulsaker, Department of Economics