EI Symposium Now Published! Consumer Protection

Edited by Janis Pappalardo, Federal Trade Commission, and Wesley Wilson, University of Oregon


We launched this symposium to grow the nascent field of consumer protection economics. Economists, particularly those with fields in industrial organization, are often aware of the Federal Trade Commission's (FTC's) competition mission, but are surprised to learn that more than half of the agency's resources are devoted to consumer protection (FTC 2019). Consumer protection regulations are everywhere. Yet, consumer protection economics is a sparsely developed literature, particularly when contrasted to the economics of competition or antitrust (Pappalardo 2020). We issued a call for papers on consumer protection topics from this broad range of fields, using a variety of techniques, including new theoretical models, targeted literature reviews or meta‐analyses, and empirical research, including econometric analyses, surveys, and experiments. The six papers selected for publication all respond to the call, represent a range of methodologies, and contribute to our understanding of key consumer protection questions.

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