11 - 13 July 2018

The Role of Data and Innovation for Competition. Competition Concerns in the Air Transport [archived]

Introduction Top

The final event of the CONNECTOR Series will provide the link with the third main ‘non-economic’ rationale of the evolving competition policy, namely data. The judges will learn about the importance of data as an input for innovation and disruptive entry. They will discuss the various data-related competition concerns in the data-driven economy and the essential facilities doctrine and its applicability to data.

The training will focus on the complex relationships revealed by the interplay between data protection, consumer protection law and competition law. In addition, it will focus on the importance of the digital price comparison tools for transparency in the digital sector.

Finally, the training will pay attention to the airline industry as a case study typical of its international nature, strict rules and paramount competition issues. Through these lens, this part will consider airport charges, market power and abuse of dominance, vertical relations between airports and airlines, airline competition and the impact of dynamic pricing algorithms.

The registration is open for judges from the Supreme Court of Cassation, the Supreme Administrative Court, the appellate courts and the district courts, following the requirements of DG Competition.

Agenda Top

Day 1, 11 July 2018 (Wednesday)

Time            Subject
08:30 – 09:00

Registration of Participants in Day 1 and Provision of Materials

09:00 – 09:15

Welcome Speech and Introduction to the Project and Its Activities by the Project Manager

Alexandra Tsvetkova, Director of LIBRe Foundation

Module 1. The Importance of Data as an Input for Innovation and Disruptive Entry
09:15 – 10:45

Data-driven Innovation: the Essential Role of Data for Product Innovation and Service Optimisation

Speaker: Ivo Emanuilov, Expert in IT Law and Data Protection
10:45 – 11:00 Coffee Break
11:00 – 12:30

Big Data, Analytics and Their Impact on Commercial Strategies: Big Data in Air Transport

Speaker: Ivo Emanuilov, Expert in IT Law and Data Protection
12:30 - 13:30 Lunch
Module 2. Data-related Competition Concerns in the Data-driven Economy
13:30 – 15:00

Data-related Competition Concerns in the Data-driven Economy

Concentrations driven by the desire to accumulate data. Implications of data protection and competition law perspectives

Markets for data in addition to the relevant markets for the services provided to users and advertisers

User-lock-in as a facilitator of exploitative conduct

Refusal of access to datasets as a breach under Article 102 TFEU

Speaker: Dr. I.J.M.A. (Inge) Graef, Assistant Professor at Tilburg Law School
15:00 – 15:30 Coffee Break
15:30 – 17:30

The Essential Facilities Doctrine and Its Applicability to Data as an Asset

Speaker: Dr. I.J.M.A. (Inge) Graef, Assistant Professor at Tilburg Law School
19:00 – 22:00 Dinner

Day 2, 12 July 2018 (Thuesday)

Time         Subject
08:30 – 09:00  

Registration of Participants in Day 2

Module 3. Interplay between Data Protection, Consumer Law and Competition Law
09:00 – 10:30

Comparison of the objectives of EU competition and data protection law

Discussion: Data protection as a non-price parameter of competition?

Speaker: Dr. I.J.M.A. (Inge) Graef, Assistant Professor at Tilburg Law School
10:45 – 11:00 Coffee Break
Module 4. Price Comparison Tools and Price Transparency in the Digital Sector
11:00 - 12:30

Benefits for consumers

Impact on suppliers and overall effect on competition

Speaker: Ivo Emanuilov, Expert in IT Law and Data Protection
12:30 - 13:30 Lunch
Module 5. Airport Competition in the EU
13:30 – 14:15

Airports as Two-sided Businesses

Airport charges and competition law: types of charges and pricing factors in the context of EU Directive 12/2009

Economic viability of airports

Speaker: Atty. Stamatis Varsamos, Expert in Aviation Law
14:15 – 15:00

Airport Market Power and Abuse of Dominance

Barriers to entry

State aid

Price undercutting

Typical constraints for airport competition

Speaker: Atty. Stamatis Varsamos, Expert in Aviation Law
15:00 – 15:30 Coffee Break
15:30 – 17:30

Airport charges imposed by airports: price differentiation, rebates and discounts

Review of European Commission’s case law: Decision 369/1995 Charleroi Airport, Decision 109/98 Manchester airport, Decision 393/2004 Charleroi Airport

Review of the Court of Justice of the EU’s case law: Case C-163/1999 Portugal, Case T-129/85 Aéroports de Paris, Case T-196/04 Ryanair and others


Atty. Stamatis Varsamos, Expert in Aviation Law

Dr. Miroslava Marinova, Expert in Economics and Competition Law
19:00 – 22:00 Dinner

Day 3, 13 July 2018 (Friday)

Time              Subject
08:30 – 09:00

Registration of Participants in Day 3

Module 6. Airline Competition
09:00 – 10:30

Business model of airline operators

Airline mergers and horizontal agreements (alliances)

Barriers to entry: access to airport slots, loyalty and pricing strategies by airports

Forum shopping by airline companies due to tax and labour law considerations

Discussion: are state-subsidized “Gulf” airlines a threat for EU airline competition?


Atty. Stamatis Varsamos, Expert in Aviation Law

Dr. Miroslava Marinova, Expert in Economics and Competition Law
10:30 – 11:00 Coffee Break
Module 7. Low Cost Carriers Under Scrutiny
11:00 – 12:30

The emergence of low cost carriers (LCCs) and their effect on airline competition

Business strategies and economies of scale: cheap airport hubs, jet fuel hedging, whole plane - economy cabin, provision of bare bones services


Dr. Miroslava Marinova, Expert in Economics and Competition Law

Atty. Stamatis Varsamos, Expert in Aviation Law
12:30 - 13:30 Lunch / Closure of the Event


Venue Top

The training on the application оf EU Competition Law tools and concepts to digital markets will be held on 11-13.07.2018 at RIU Pravets Golf & SPA Resort, Pravets.

The RIU Pravets Golf & SPA Resort is situated at a picturesque lake in the vicinity of Pravts town, with a close distance (less than hour) to the capital - Sofia.






LIBRe Foundation will provide each participant in the training with hotel accommodation (3 nights for the period 10.07.2018 – 12.07.2018, including breakfast and tourist tax for a single-room accommodation), as well as lunches, dinners, and coffee breaks for each training day, in accordance with the training schedule. The participant package includes free use of thermal zone, SPA centre, inside swimming pool, fitness centre, and Internet.

The organiser does not cover expenses for alcoholic drinks, mini bar, telephone calls from the guest rooms or any other personal expenses throughout the training.

The hotel check-in is available after 15:00 in the day of arrival. The check-out should be made not later than 12:00 in the day of departure. You will be notified on any possibilities for late check-outs.

Each participant will be reimbursed for their travel costs for train or bus services after they provide the tickets for the journey. If you use your work or personal vehicle, the travel costs will be reimbursed in accordance with the rules for reimbursement in Bulgaria, considering the type of vehicle, the fuel consumption, and the distance, and after a receipted invoice is provided by the participant.

  • With public transport: bus

Pravets main bus station is located 4,5km from RIU Pravets Golf & SPA Resort. If you choose this option you could request a transfer from the bus station to the hotel. Please notify us on such matter by filling the online Registration form (please use the field “Share your expectations for the upcoming training event”).

  • With personal vehicle: automobile

RIU Pravets Golf & SPA Resort is located at the address: Pravets, 8 Ezeroto Sq. (GPS coordinates: 42°54'32.8"N 23°53'39.9"E). The hotel has a private parking which you could use for free.

Every participant enlisted for the training will receive detail directions for travel and accommodation after confirming their participation.

Speakers Top

Inge Graef is Assistant Professor at Tilburg Law School with affiliations to the Tilburg Institute for Law, Technology and Society (TILT) and the Tilburg Law and Economics Center (TILEC). The focus of Inge's research is on competition enforcement in the digital economy. She is particularly interested in the interface between competition law and other fields of EU law such as data protection, intellectual property and electronic communications law. Other research interests include the Digital Single Market and net neutrality. In her doctoral thesis, Inge explored the interaction between competition law and data on online platforms, and the extent to which data protection can be protected as a non-efficiency concern in competition policy.

Dr. Miroslava Marinova is an expert with a Master Degree in Economics and a PhD in Competition Law (University of Reading, UK). She acted as a case handler at the Bulgarian Commission on Protection of Competition for ten years (2004-2014). Currently, she is working as a freelance expert in Competition Law and Economics on specific cases across Europe.

Atty. Stamatis Varsamos is an aviation attorney with sixteen years of experience on airports regulatory, operating, procurement and commercial issues pursuant to national, international and EU aviation and procurement law, focusing particularly on airport charges, airline/airport relations, the development of the legal concept for the provision of ground handling and PRM services at Athens airport, waste disposal and the negotiation/conclusion of commercial concession agreements (BOTs’ & retail).Member of of Airports Council International (ACI Europe) Ground Handling & State aid task force representing Athens International Airport.

Ivo Emanuilov is a lawyer, researcher and former software developer with extensive knowledge of the technology sector. He graduated from Sofia University with a degree in law. He also obtained a degree in English and European Union Law from the University of Cambridge and an LLM Intellectual Property and ICT Law from KU Leuven. Ivo is an experienced researcher and consultant focusing on the interdisciplinary aspects at the intersection of technology and law. His experience spans the domains of privacy and data protection, information security, privacy and security risk management, privacy engineering and automated and autonomous technologies in transport.

Presentations Top

The presentations from the training will be published after it takes place.

Video (by Modules) Top

Video recordings (by modules) from the training will be published within 1 month after the event takes place.

Training Proceedings Top

Training proceedings will be published within 2 months after the event.

Further Information Top

For more information on the event or if you wish to change the submitted information related to your dates of arrival and departure, you could contact:

Alexandra Tsvetkova



Project Manager


Project Office

GSM: (+359) 884 488 168


GSM: (+359) 876 408 233

E-mail: office@constantproject.eu


E-mail: office@constantproject.eu


Registration Top

You could express your interest for participation by filling in this online form.

Due to the limited number of participants, the applications made by filling in the online form will be accepted in the order of their submission until 15.06.2018.

For each application received, a member of LIBRe Foundation will contact you for confirming that your application was successfully received and/or asking details on the application:

  • Within 3 hours after the application was received – for application received until 15:00 on a working day
  • Within the following working day – for applications received after 15:00 on a working day or on non-working days.


Applications made by filling in the online form will be accepted in the order of their submission until 15.06.2018.

The applicants registered for taking part in the trainings will be notified on 16.06.2018.


Some of the data you voluntary provide is personal data and falls under the regulation of the Personal Data Protection Act of Bulgaria. The personal data you provide will be managed for the purposes of organising and implementation of the training and for implementation of personal data administrator’s lawful interests related to eventual labour or civil contract with you. LIBRe Foundation is obliged to use, edit, and store your personal data under the guarantee that it will not be disclosed to third parties. We inform you and you hereby agree that LIBRe Foundation has the right to provide your personal data to governmental and municipal authorities, banks, companies, and other organisational and private stakeholders in case there is legal obligation under a special regulation, or in case this is necessary for implementation of your lawful rights as a participant in the training, or if this is necessary for implementation of LIBRe’s lawful rights. The Foundation also has the right to provide your personal data to individuals – employees of the organisation who are assigned to conduct the process of organisation and implementation of the training. We inform you that you have the right to access and request corrections of your personal data, as well as the right to object to the usage and disclosure of your personal data for purposes different from the above.

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