Auctions and Procurement

Thu 20 July 2017


8:00 Breakfast
8.45: Directors’s Introduction and Academic Briefing
9.00:Auctions: Basic Formats and Optimal Bidding  (Peter Eso)
10:00 Syndicate Discussion
11:15:Auction Design in Theory and Practice  (Peter Eso)
12:00 Break, followed by lunch at 12.15pm
1:15 Syndicate Discussion
2:15:Auctions in Business  (Peter Eso)
3:15 Syndicate Discussion
4:30: Applications of Auctions: some recent experiences (Dan Muldoom)
7:00 Drinks Reception followed by Dinner at 7:30
8:45 Evening Speaker: Gabriel Glöckler


Our focus in the regular OUBEP program has so far been on market interactions, whether perfectly competitive, monopolistic, or oligopolistic. However, auctions are an important mechanism in economies both ancient (the Greeks, Romans and Babylonians all used them) and modern. The application of the tools of microeconomics and game theory to auctions has been immensely profitable. Today we begin by describing the different auction formats and their uses, before considering the optimal bidding strategies for participants. We then take the perspective of an auction designer, by assessing which auction formats should be used to maximize efficiency, maximize sales revenue, or minimise procurement costs. The final lecture offers perspectives on how businesses have used auctions in practice to cut procurement costs and maximise sales value.

N.B Breakfast is later than usual today.

Peter B. Bensinger Jr. -Bartlit Beck Herman Palenchar & Scott LLP

Peter is a nationally recognised pioneer in the use of legal technology in the courtroom, which led the American Lawyer to dub him the “most wired lawyer in America.” While he handles a wide variety of complex commercial cases, Peter has had a focus in intellectual property and pharmaceutical antitrust. He was co-lead counsel for Bayer in the leading “reverse payment” patent-antitrust case, In re Ciprofloxacin Hydrochloride Antitrust Litigation, in which Bayer prevailed in the Federal Courts. Although Peter majored in English, he is known for his ability to explain complex science and technology to lay judges and juries. Representative cases have involved issues of chemistry, immunology, microbiology, injection moulding, oral contraceptives, electromagnetic wave resistivity, motor oil, stealth boats, gasoline vapour recovery, and internet recommendation algorithms. Before law school, Peter was an actor in New York City, with appearances on Saturday Night Live and All My Children. Once back in his hometown of Chicago, he became a featured performer in the Chicago Bar Association’s annual musical satire, appearing as Mayor Richard M. Daley and as President Clinton in the year of the Monica Lewinsky scandal. At the firm, Peter has responsibility for attorney professional development, performance review, and new lawyer orientation. He offers two unique CLE presentations: “Dealing with Jerks – using Aikido and active listening to deal with difficult opposing counsel;” and “Presentation Stagecraft” – using fundamental theatre techniques to enhance connection and persuasiveness (visual focus, body language, vocal technique, staging to control audience focus, and particular strategies for briefing the C-Suite).

Peter Eso – Syndicate Tutor

Peter is a Associate Professor (Reader) in Economics and Tutorial 315_Peter_EsoFellow of Jesus College, Oxford University. After completing a PhD in Economics at Harvard University, Peter became an Assistant Professor at the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University (USA) in 2001. He joined Oxford in 2009, and has been teaching Microeconomics and Game Theory at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. His research focuses on game theory and the economics of information, studying questions such as the role of risk aversion in trading games (e.g. auctions); communication and bargaining when parties may obtain provable information; and what determines the  price of advice (how to sell and disclose information).  Peter occasionally advises companies on auctions of telecommunication licenses.

Gabriel Glöckler – ECB

Gabriel joined in 2016 the senior management of the ECB’s Directorate General Communication as Principal Adviser, where he focuses on the Bank’s outreach towards the general public, politics, and academia and the strategic direction of its communications. He started his career at the European Central Bank in 1999, initially as Economist before becoming Deputy Head of the EU Institutions Division, and in that capacity also a member of the EU Economic Policy Committee. Thereafter he was Head of the ECB Secretariat and Assistant Secretary to the ECB’s Executive Board and Governing Council. Since 2013 Gabriel is also a Visiting Professor at the College of Europe. He holds a MA degree in PPE from Oxford and a Masters in European Studies from the College of Europe.

Dan Muldoom – Dotecon

Dr Dan Maldoom is a partner of the economic consultancy DotEcon, who design and implement auctions and market mechanisms around the world and assist bidders in high-stakes auctions. DotEcon has run all the UK’s spectrum auctions since 2000 and was responsible for the design and implementation of the Indian 3G auction. DotEcon has pioneered the application of combinatorial auctions to spectrum allocation. It has also been involved in novel applications of auctions, including within energy, transport and central banking. Before founding DotEcon in 1999, Dan was a University Lecturer in Economics at Oxford and has a DPhil from Nuffield College.