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 「谷針」有方


疫情未止 「谷針」有方





萊尼和妻子在家中受歹徒襲擊,妻子被姦殺,萊尼腦部受傷,康復後人生目標只有一個:找到兇手,為妻子報仇。無奈他患上短期失憶症,只能記得剛剛幾分鐘發生的事,其餘就忘得一乾二淨,又怎能追查兇手的線索?他住在某個汽車旅館,但記不起入住的來由;有些人在幫他,他卻不記得見過對方,也不敢完全信任他們。 這就是電影《凶心人》(Memento)的情節,內地譯名為《記憶碎片》,台灣則譯作《記憶拼圖》。電影發行於2000年,導演是後來聲名大噪的基斯杜化.路蘭,當時剛出道不久,已有不同凡響的表現。全片採用獨特的片段式倒敍手法,呈現劇情的來龍去脈──英雄孤軍作戰,最終克服困難,實現人生目標;聽來驟似老套,但其實別有深意。

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.