Skip to content

Case Studies in Competition Policy Research: A Systematic Literature Review, by Shuping Lyu, Caroline Buts and Marc Jegers

Shuping Lyu, Caroline Buts, Marc Jegers

The case study constitutes an important methodology in academic research, also in the field of competition policy. However, to the best of our knowledge, an elaborate review on how the case study method is applied in competition policy research is still missing. In response, this article presents a systematic literature review that comprehensively explores this topic through seven sub-questions: in which policy areas are case studies applied?; in which jurisdiction?; what are the specific purposes of the case studies applied?; how are the case studies designed (single or multiple)?; what is/are the specific case(s) about (unit of observation)?; how are the case studies undertaken (qualitatively or quantitatively)?; and are there significant relationships among several of these characteristics?. We confirm that the case study method plays an important role in research on competition policy. It is most adopted to study merger cases, especially in the US, the EU and China. It responds to a broad variety of research questions. A single case study is most frequently used. The topic studied can be an organisation, a sector or a location. Both qualitative and quantitative case studies are found, but qualitative case studies are more common. We report a significant relationship between the topic of competition policy and the objective, the unit of observation and the case study methodology applied. Furthermore, there is also a significant relationship between the objective and the case study methodology.

Shuping Lyu is a PhD candidate at the Department of Applied Economics of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB). Caroline Buts and Marc Jegers are both professors at the same department. We thank the China Scholarship Council (CSC) for financial support. For correspondence: <>.


Lx-Number Search

(e.g. A | 000123 | 01)

Export Citation