Michael Kummer

Adjunct Assistant Professor

Member Of:
  • School of Economics
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Dr. Michael Kummer is a lecturer in the School of Economics at the University of East Anglia. Prior to this, Dr. Kummer was an Associate Professor of Economics at Georgia Tech. His research interests focus on the generation of user generated content in networks, the structure of online markets, as well as the interaction of firms and consumers online.

Dr. Kummer has also been a postdoctoral researcher at the Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW) in Mannheim, Germany. Joining ZEW in 2009, he was in the ZEW Doctoral Studies Network Program (DocNet) and obtained his PhD from the University of Mannheim in September 2014.  Prior to earning his PhD, Kummer studied Economics at the University of Vienna, obtained his M.S. in Mathematical Economics from the Toulouse School of Economics, and was a research assistant at the Johannes Kepler University, Linz.

  • Ph.D., University of Mannheim
  • M.S., Toulouse School of Economics
  • M.A., University of Vienna
Research Fields:
  • Applied Econometrics
  • Applied Microeconomics
  • Economics of Telecommunications Networks
  • Industrial Organization
  • Asia (East)
  • Europe
  • North America
  • Digital Communication
  • Infrastructure
  • Privacy
  • Science and Technology
Courses Taught:
  • ECON-6460: Industrial Organization
  • ECON-7022: Econometrics I
  • ECON-7112: Industrial Organization II

Selected Publications

Journal Articles

  • Market Structure and Market Performance in E-Commerce
    Date: May 2014

    We analyze the interaction between market structure and market performance and how it varies over the product cycle. To account for the potential endogeneity in this relation, we use an instrumental variable approach. We combine data from the largest Austrian online market for price comparisons with retail data on wholesale prices provided by a major hardware producer for consumer electronics. Our results show that instrumenting is important for estimating the empirical effect of competition on the markup of the price leader. One more firm in the market is associated with a reduction of the price leader׳s markup which is equivalent to competition between existing firms for an additional 3 weeks in the product life cycle. Our results support search theoretic models and contradict models of monopolistic competition. Moreover our results support the existence of price dynamics over the product cycle. They also highlight the substitutability between newly innovated and old expiring technologies and how it varies with respect to competitors׳ and own brand innovations.

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  • 99 Cent: Price Points in E-Commerce
    Date: March 2014

    Setting prices ending in nines is a common feature of many markets for consumer products. This prevalence has been explained either by a specific image of such price points or by the exploitation of rational inattention on the part of the consumers who want to economize on the cost of information processing. We use data from an Austrian price comparison site and find a remarkable prevalence of such price setting. Prices ending with nine are also sticky: price-setters change them with a significantly lower probability; rivals underbid these prices more seldom if they represent the cheapest price on the market, and we observe higher price jumps by price leaders for these price points. Finally, we explore the impact of these price points on the consumers’ demand.

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