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The Federal Trade Commission will begin its Hearings Initiative with two full-day sessions, co-sponsored with and held at the Georgetown University Law Center, on September 13 and 14, 2018. The event will be webcast live.

The Georgetown event will be the first in a series of hearings that will examine whether broad-based changes in the economy, evolving business practices, new technologies, or international developments might require adjustments to competition and consumer protection enforcement priorities of the Commission. These public events, in conjunction with the public comment process, will provide the FTC with a broad and diverse range of viewpoints and stimulate evaluation of key enforcement and policy issues.

FTC Chairman Joe Simons will present opening remarks, followed by two days of discussion by a distinguished set of panelists on the following topics:

  • the current landscape of competition and consumer protection law and policy;
  • whether the U.S. economy has become more concentrated and less competitive;
  • the regulation of consumer data;
  • antitrust law and the consumer welfare standard; and
  • the analysis of vertical mergers.

The Commission invites public comment on any of these issues. Comments can be submitted electronically until October 14.

Additional sessions of the FTC Hearings Initiative will be held throughout the fall and early winter. An initial list of sessions and topics follows, and additional sessions and topics will be announced in the fall:

September 21, 2018
FTC Constitution Center

  • State of U.S. Antitrust Law
  • Mergers and Monopsony or Buyer Power

October 15-17, 2018
George Mason University Antonin Scalia Law School

  • The Identification and Analysis of Collusive, Exclusionary, and Predatory Conduct by Digital and Technology-Based Platform Businesses
  • Antitrust Framework for Evaluating Acquisitions of Potential or Nascent Competitors in Digital Marketplaces
  • Antitrust Evaluation of Labor Markets

October 23-24, 2018
FTC Constitution Center

  • Innovation and Intellectual Property Policy

November 6-7, 2018
American University Washington College of Law

  • Privacy, Big Data, and Competition

November 13-14, 2018
Howard University School of Law

  • Algorithms, Artificial Intelligence, and Predictive Analytics

The FTC Hearings on Competition and Consumer Protection in the 21st Century will accommodate as many attendees as possible; however, admittance may be limited due to seating availability. Reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities are available upon request. Requests for accommodations should be submitted to Elizabeth Kraszewski via email at or by phone at (202) 326-3087. Such requests should include a detailed description of the accommodation needed. Please allow at least five days advance notice for accommodation requests; last minute requests will be accepted but may not be possible to accommodate.

Hearing #1 On Competition and Consumer Protection in the 21st Century 9:00 am to 5:15 pm, September 13 and 14, 2018
Georgetown University Law Center’s Hart Auditorium
600 New Jersey Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20001
View the agenda

The Federal Trade Commission develops policy initiatives on issues that affect competition, consumers, and the U.S. economy. Like the FTC on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, read our blogs and subscribe to press releases for the latest FTC news and resources.

Contact Information

Peter Kaplan
Office of Public Affairs

Derek Moore or John Dubiansky
Office of Policy Planning