The Riddle Underlying Refusal-to-Deal Theory

4 Pages Posted: 8 Mar 2010 Last revised: 21 May 2014

See all articles by Alan J. Devlin

Alan J. Devlin

Latham & Watkins LLP

Michael S. Jacobs

DePaul University - College of Law

Date Written: March 8, 2010


May a dominant firm refuse to share its intellectual property with its rivals? This question lies at the heart of a highly divisive, international debate concerning the proper application of the antitrust laws. In this short essay, we consider a profound, yet previously unaddressed, incongruity underlying the controversy. Specifically, why is it that monopolists refuse to share their IP, even at monopoly prices? In exploring this question, we unearth an inescapable contradiction that afflicts the arguments of those who would require monopolists to license their IP in certain circumstances.

Suggested Citation

Devlin, Alan James and Jacobs, Michael S., The Riddle Underlying Refusal-to-Deal Theory (March 8, 2010). Northwestern University Law Review Colloquy, Vol. 105, p. 1, 2010, Available at SSRN:

Alan James Devlin (Contact Author)

Latham & Watkins LLP ( email )

555 - 11th Street, N.W.
Suite 1000
Washington, DC 20004-1304
United States

Michael S. Jacobs

DePaul University - College of Law ( email )

25 E. Jackson Blvd.
Chicago, IL Cook County 60604-2287
United States

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics