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EC 244 - Economics of Industrial Organization


This guide ties in with the class assignment to analyze a particular industry in detail.  If you need any assistance in using these resources or if you are having difficulty in locating information, please contact the Economics and Business liaison librarian.


Background Information

Books on Reserve

These books (on reserve at the Circulation Desk) contain chapters describing recent developments in various industries, including the ones being investigated for this project. Reading these chapters should give you a foundational understanding of the history and structure of the industry, including public policy toward it.

Industry and Firm Studies (4th ed.)
     Reserves HD31 .I55 2007
Nine industry studies, including airlines, banking, soft drinks, and sports.

Industry Studies (3rd ed.)
     Reserves HC106.8 .I53 2002
Studies of 14 industries, including pharmaceuticals, casino gambling, and health insurance.

Structure of American Industry (12th ed.)
     Reserves HC106 .S78 2009
Overviews of 12 industries, including electricity, beer, music recording, and college sports.

Reference Books

Encyclopedia of American Industries
This somewhat dated (2004) online encyclopedia's profiles include information on market structure, but their focus is on the industry's historical development.

Encyclopedia of Emerging Industries
     Ref HD2324 .E528 2007
This is an excellent source of background information on recently growing industries, such as alternative energy, e-commerce, and internet service provision.


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Industry and Company Reports

The following resources provide detailed insight into industry dynamics, including predictions of future developments. You can also obtain up-to-date company profiles for the major players in your industry, to learn about their recent performance and strategies for future growth.


Standard and Poor's Industry Surveys [found in NetAdvantage]
     Ref HG4910 .S756 (print version)
These detailed profiles characterize the dynamics of a particular industry at the time they were written, including the major players, trends, financial statistics, and the regulatory framework.  To find the latest survey on your industry, click the Industry tab and use the Industry Surveys pull-down menu to select the appropriate report. Within the Industry Survey, use the links at top (such as "Industry Trends" and "How the Industry Operates") to navigate to different sections of the report.

Industry Profiles [found in Business Source Premier]
This database includes Datamonitor's Industry Profiles, which provide annual summaries of particular industries in the US, Canada, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and elsewhere. To access an industry report, type a keyword representing your industry into the "Browse for" box.

Industry and Market Research [found in ABI/INFORM]
Profiles of industries and markets in major countries.  One approach is to search the name of the industry and country of interest (e.g., Pharmaceutical and Canada), and click the Reference/Reports tab in the results screen to limit to market and industry reports.  Another approach is to click the Browse tab and access publications like BMI Industry Reports or Industry Trends and Forecasts, from which you can refine your search to add keywords for your industry and country of interest.


Company Profiles [found in Business Source Premier]
This database also enables you to find Datamonitor reports on individual companies within your sector, which include histories, SWOT analyses, and revenue analyses. To access a company report, type the company's name into the "Browse for" box.

Standard and Poor's Stock Reports [found in NetAdvantage]
To learn more about the recent performance and future outlook of companies in your industry, search for their S&P Stock Reports. To retrieve the latest report on your company, click the Companies tab, select "Stock Reports" in the Resources pull-down menu, and search for the company either by name or ticker symbol.

Hoover's Company Records
Profiles of US and foreign companies, including descriptions of their recent activities, breakdowns of their products and operations, and recent financial data.  Type the company's name into the first search box and limit to the Company/Org field before searching.


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Geisel Library catalog
For this project, books will be primarily useful for background information on government regulatory policy and the recent history of your industry. To find general books about public policy and antitrust issues, try doing a Subject search in the catalog for any of the following. Click on relevant subject headings to see a list of available books. You can also try searching your industry as a keyword.

  • Antitrust law
  • Competition
  • Industrial policy
  • Trade regulation

For books specific to your industry, try keyword searching in WorldCat to identify relevant books owned by other colleges. Limit the Material Type to "Books" and the Year to recent years to find recently-published books. Sample keyword searches for this project include the following:

  • (automobiles OR autos) AND future
  • casino* AND gambling
  • banking AND industry AND regulat*
  • soft drink* OR Coca-Cola OR soda
  • music AND recording AND industry

When you find a useful-looking book in WorldCat, you can click on the "Request via Interlibrary Loan" link in its WorldCat record. Books requested through WorldCat are usually delivered to Geisel Library in 7–10 days, so be sure to start your research early. You will be emailed when your book arrives, and you can check it out for a specified borrowing period.


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Journal Articles

There are a number of business and economic journals that provide scholarly analysis of industry dynamics and regulatory issues. There are also hundreds of "trade publications" that publish articles about the latest trends in the industries that they cover.

Search the databases below to find useful articles from these types of publications. If there is no link to the full text of the article, click on the WebBridge icon to determine whether the journal is available in Geisel Library or in full-text via another online database. If the article isn't available, consider clicking on the Interlibrary Loan link in the WebBridge window to request a PDF copy of the article from another library. Within a week, you should receive an email indicating that the article is available to access.

Business Source Premier
The place to start, with hundreds of full-text scholarly journals (including the Antitrust Bulletin and Journal of Industrial Economics) and trade publications. Try basic keyword searching using the Boolean "AND" operator to link together terms representing different concepts. For example, search "recording AND industry AND (online OR download*)". Use the Publication Type limiters to the left of the search results to narrow your focus to Academic Journals, Periodicals, or Trade Publications. Another approach is to combine Subject searches on terms such as "Antitrust Law," "Trade Regulation," and "Competition" with keywords for your specific industry or company.

Another great starting point, with full-text articles from hundreds of scholarly journals, industry and trade periodicals, and regional business news publications.  As in Business Source Premier, start with keyword searches in the Citation and Abstract field.  On the Results screen, click on the gray tabs to narrow your search to Scholarly Journals, Magazines, or Trade Publications.  Use the drop-down box at right to switch the sort order to "Most relevant first", to improve the quality of your results.  You can also click on any of the Suggested Topic links above your results to narrow your focus to specific subjects.

LexisNexis Academic — News
Offers full-text articles from selected business news publications. Next to the Sources label, choose "Business News Publications" from the drop-down box. Adjust the Date Range as desired to focus on particular time periods.

ProQuest International Business News
Search hundreds of publications that report the latest business and industry news from Canada, Europe, and Asia.


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Newspaper Articles

Along with articles from trade publications (which can be found in the journal databases above), newspaper articles are often the best source for up-to-date information on the latest industry dynamics. The following databases offer full text of recent newspaper articles. Try the same keyword searches that succeeded in the journal databases.

LexisNexis Academic — News
Find full-text newspaper articles from local, national, and international papers. In the Sources drop-down box, choose either "US Newspapers and Wires" or "Major World Newspapers". In the results screen, change the Sort to "Relevance" to move the best results to the top. If you have too many results, add more keywords or limit the search to "headline and lead paragraphs".

ProQuest Newsstand
An online collection of over 850 full text international, national, and regional newspapers.  In the results screen, use the drop-down box at right to switch the sort order to "Most relevant first", to move the best matches for your keywords to the top.

Wall Street Journal
This database offers full-text access to the Wall Street Journal from 1984 through the present. You can do keyword searching within the citations, abstracts or full text of articles.


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Selected Websites

The following websites will supplement your research by providing government documents on US trade regulation and legal documents from antitrust court cases.

Department of Justice, Antitrust Division
This agency enforces the antitrust laws by filing criminal suits or initiating civil action against businesses allegedly engaging in anti-competitive practices. Click on Public Documents to access appellate briefs filed by the Dept. of Justice, or go to Antitrust Case Filings for an alphabetical listing of cases. You may also try using the Search Tools to locate documents relevant to your industry.

Federal Trade Commission
This is the federal agency charged with preventing anticompetitive business practices and reviewing mergers for their potential adverse impacts on consumers. See their Advocacy Filings for staff comments and amicus briefs filed by the FTC, the Case List of antitrust cases organized by company, Working Papers, and Staff Reports.  Or, try keyword searching on a company or industry in the Search box.


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Citing Sources

See the library's Citing Sources guide for resources on how to properly cite research materials. Always confirm the style required by your instructor.


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