American Economic Review: Vol. 104 No. 5 (May 2014)

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The Industrial Organization of Online Education

Article Citation

Cowen, Tyler, and Alex Tabarrok. 2014. "The Industrial Organization of Online Education." American Economic Review, 104(5): 519-22.

DOI: 10.1257/aer.104.5.519

Abstract

Online education has flexibility and cost advantages over in-class teaching and these advantages will grow with improvements in information technology. We consider likely market structures given that the quality aspects of online education exhibit endogenous fixed costs. Concentration in the market for courses could be high, as it is currently in the market for textbooks. The not-for-profit sector will exhibit lower costs, lower concentration, and possibly zero price.

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Authors

Cowen, Tyler (George Mason U)
Tabarrok, Alex (George Mason U)

JEL Classifications

I21: Analysis of Education
I23: Higher Education; Research Institutions


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