Dr. Wen ZHOU
IMBA Programme Director
Associate Professor
Associate Director, Asia Case Research Centre

3917 5665

KK 1225

Academic & Professional Qualification
  • PhD in Economics, Duke University
  • MA in Economics, Peking University
  • BSc in Biology, University of Science & Technology of China

Dr. Wen Zhou is an Associate Professor in the group of Management and Strategy, HKU Business School. He received BS in biology from the University of Science and Technology of China, MA in economics from Peking University and PhD in economics from Duke University. He joined the University of Hong Kong in 2007 after working at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology for several years.


Dr. Zhou teaches Managerial Economics for MBA, IMBA, and EMBA.

Research Interest

Dr. Zhou is an economist working in the field of industrial organization. His research focuses on endogenous market structure in the presence of mergers, innovation, and international trade. He has also studied business strategies such as pricing and advertising.

Selected Publications
Recent Publications
疫情未止 「谷针」有方


疫情未止 「谷针」有方





莱尼和妻子在家中受歹徒袭击,妻子被奸杀,莱尼脑部受伤,康复后人生目标只有一个:找到凶手,为妻子报仇。无奈他患上短期失忆症,只能记得刚刚几分钟发生的事,其余就忘得一乾二净,又怎能追查凶手的线索?他住在某个汽车旅馆,但记不起入住的来由;有些人在帮他,他却不记得见过对方,也不敢完全信任他们。 这就是电影《凶心人》(Memento)的情节,内地译名为《记忆碎片》,台湾则译作《记忆拼图》。电影发行于2000年,导演是后来声名大噪的基思杜化.路兰,当时刚出道不久,已有不同凡响的表现。全片采用独特的片段式倒叙手法,呈现剧情的来龙去脉──英雄孤军作战,最终克服困难,实现人生目标;听来骤似老套,但其实别有深意。

Inflexible Repositioning: Commitment in Competition and Uncertainty

We study the value of commitment in a business environment that is both competitive and uncertain, in which two firms face stochastic demands and compete in positioning and repositioning. If the future demand tends to disperse or the demand uncertainty is sufficiently large, one firm chooses rigidity (i.e., commits not to change its positions), and the other chooses flexibility (i.e., to reposition freely). We find that a firm’s rigidity can benefit not only itself, but also its flexible rival. When uncertainty is larger, rigidity becomes more valuable relative to flexibility. These results arise because the asymmetric equilibrium generates two collective gains in addition to the usual individual gain (in terms of competitive advantages) accrued to the committing firm. A firm’s rigid repositioning can soften competition and generate a commitment value, and the other firm’s flexible repositioning generates an option value. Both values then spill over to competitors within the ecosystem. These results suggest that, when firms compete under uncertainty, commitment and options are valuable not only for the party that is making the choice, but also for all competing parties collectively. Commitment value and option value do not have to be mutually exclusive; they can coexist and even strengthen each other through unilateral commitment, which achieves the best of both strategies.

The opening and competition of the Hong Kong electricity market


Vertical Integration and Disruptive Cross-market R&D

We study how vertical market structure affects the incentives of suppliers and customers to develop a new input that will enable the innovator to replace the incumbent supplier. In a vertical setting with an incumbent monopoly upstream supplier and two downstream firms, we show that vertical integration reduces the R&D incentives of the integrated parties, but increases that of the nonintegrated downstream rival. Strategic vertical integration may occur whereby the upstream incumbent integrates with a downstream firm to discourage or even preempt downstream disruptive R&D. Depending on the R&D costs, vertical integration may lower the social rate of innovation.

The regulation of electricity market in Hong Kong


Why should we regulate public transport?

The article 《為什麼要管制公共交通?》 was originally published in Hong Kong Economic Journal column 「龍虎山下」

When is upstream collusion profitable?

Motivated by the recent antitrust cases in which Japanese auto parts suppliers colluded to raise supply prices against their long‐term collaborators, the Japanese carmakers, we study the conditions under which an upstream collusion is profitable even after compensating downstream direct purchasers. Oligopoly competition in successive industries is shown to give rise to a vertical externality and a horizontal externality. If a collusive price of intermediate goods better balances the two externalities, the collusion will raise the joint profit of all firms in the two industries and is therefore profitable for the upstream after compensation of downstream firms.