As part of the programme of the Master 2 in Economics
and Competition Law, I performed a four-month internship
in the Monopolies Division of the Competition Authority
of Ireland, in Dublin. This state agency deals, like its other
European counterparts, with the enforcement of national and
European Competition Law, and its objective is to ensure that
competition between companies in Ireland is fair.
The Competition Authority of Ireland is organised in four
main divisions, namely:
- Monopolies, where vertical restraints and alleged abuses of
dominant position are assessed under Article 101 and 102 of
the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.
- Cartels, that is responsible for investigating alleged illegal
horizontal agreements between competitors.
- Mergers, where it is ensured that concentrations that are
over a certain financial threshold do not lessen competition.
- Advocacy, whose duty is to promote competition by giving
advice to the Irish government and public bodies and by
analysing specific sectors of the economy to identify possible
Two additional divisions, Strategy and Corporate Services,
carry out administrative and coordination tasks.
As an intern at the Monopolies Division of the Competition
Authority of Ireland I was involved in the economic and
legal analysis of complaints sent by firms alleging breaches
of Irish and European Competition Law and in the draft of
documents to be sent to my Divisional Manager under the
direct supervision of a Case Officer.
My tasks involved mainly:
- the definition of the relevant product and geographic
- a presentation of the economic sector related to the
- the assessment of market power of the companies
operating in that market
- the analysis of the alleged anticompetitive conduct to check
whether a breach of competition law actually took place
I was involved especially in the analysis of alleged
abuses of dominant position and of vertical restraints
occurring in several sectors of the Irish economy, such as
telecommunications, advertising and electronic payments.
I had the opportunity to participate also in some activities
carried out by the Cartels Division, in particular in the
assessment of an alleged “hub and spoke” collusion.
The M2 in Economics and Competition Law provided me with
the theoretical background I needed to deal effectively with
my tasks at the Competition Authority of Ireland. Among
the different classes I attended, I believe that the ones in
“Competition Economics and Econometrics”, “Competition
and Market Strategies”, “Competition Law in Practice” and
the “Workshop on the Law and Economics of Competition”
proved extremely useful for the understanding of the issues I
had to deal with every day at work.
I decided to apply to the Competition Authority of Ireland
because of the advice of a previous year’s student of the
Economics and Competition Law programme. It was not very
difficult to get my internship since the Toulouse School of
Economics is well-regarded all over Europe for the quality of
its Master programmes and for its students’ theoretical skills.
A work experience in a Competition Authority is probably
the best way in order to get access to the job market in the
field of competition policy, and that is why I will never stop
suggesting TSE students to apply for an internship at such a
kind of institution.