William E. Kovacic

Portrait of William E. Kovacic
Global Competition Professor of Law and Policy; Professor of Law; Director, Competition Law Center
2000 H Street, NW
Washington, District Of Columbia 20052
[email protected]

Before joining the law school in 1999, William E. Kovacic was the George Mason University Foundation Professor at the George Mason University School of Law. From January 2006 to October 2011, he was a member of the Federal Trade Commission and chaired the agency from March 2008 to March 2009. He was the FTC’s General Counsel from June 2001 to December 2004. In 2011 he received the FTC’s Miles W. Kirkpatrick Award for Lifetime Achievement. 

Since August 2013, Professor Kovacic has served as a Non-Executive Director with the United Kingdom’s Competition and Markets Authority. From January 2009 to September 2011, he was Vice-Chair for Outreach for the International Competition Network. He has advised many countries and international organizations on antitrust, consumer protection, government contracts, and the design of regulatory institutions. 

At GW, Professor Kovacic has taught antitrust, contracts, and government contracts. He is co-editor (with Ariel Ezrachi) of the Journal of Antitrust Enforcement. His publications since returning to GW in 2011 include “Good Agency Practice and the Implementation of Competition Law” in European Yearbook of International Economic Law (Christoph Hermann ed. 2013); “Antitrust in High-Tech Industries: Improving the Federal Antitrust Joint Venture” in George Mason Law Review (2012); “Behavioral Economics: Implications for Regulatory Agency Behavior” in Journal of Regulatory Economics (2012) (with James Cooper); “Competition Agency Design: What’s on the Menu?” in European Competition Journal (2012) (with David Hyman); “Plus Factors and Agreement in Antitrust Law” in Michigan Law Review (2011) (with Robert Marshall, Leslie Marx & Halbert White); “Ensuring Integrity and Competition and Public Procurement Markets: A Dual Challenge for Good Governance” in The WTO Regime on Government Procurement: Challenge and Reform (Sue Arrowsmith & Robert Anderson, eds. 2011) (with Robert Anderson & Anna Caroline Mueller); “The International Competition Network: Its Past, Current, and Future Role” inMinnesota Journal of International Law (2011) (with Hugh Hollman); “The William Humphrey and Abram Myers Years: The FTC from 1925 to 1929” in Antitrust Law Journal (2011) (with Marc Winerman); Professor Kovacic also is co-author (with Andrew Gavil & Jonathan Baker) of Antitrust Law in Perspective: Cases, Concepts and Problems in Competition Policy (2d ed. 2008) and Antitrust Law & Economics in a Nutshell (5th ed. 2004) (with Ernest Gellhorn & Stephen Calkins).



BA, Princeton University; JD Columbia University

In the News

"Is Google Too Powerful? How A New Era Of Regulation Could Change Big Tech"

November 25, 2020
William E. Kovacic discussed on WFAE-FM (Charlotte, NC) whether the DOJ antitrust lawsuit against Google may usher in a new era of regulation.

"Trade Commission's Tech Cases: Hits and Misfires"

November 19, 2020
William E. Kovacic is quoted in Axios about the FTC's record on regulating tech as they look to bring antitrust action against Facebook.

"Google’s High-Handed Tactics with US Regulators are Backfiring"

October 25, 2020

William E. Kovacic is quoted in the New York Post about how the FTC's previous refusal to sue Google likely emboldened the tech giant.

"Google's Defense Against Antitrust Lawsuit? You"

October 23, 2020

William E. Kovacic is quoted by CNN about how the government's lawsuit against Google will follow the previous case against Microsoft.

"The Justice Department Is Suing Google — but It’s the Government’s Power to Police Big Tech That’s on Trial"

October 21, 2020

William E. Kovacic is quoted in The Washington Post about how the case against Microsoft two decades ago is informing the case against Google.