As the English say, it is “out”. Fiona Scott Morton, Professor of Economics at Yale University, chosen by the Commission as chief economist of the Competition Directorate General, has thrown in the towel, taking note of “the political controversies” generated once her appointment was leaked and she resigned from the position, dragged down by the controversies.
Fiona Scott Morton is a proven academic, having worked for the Barack Obama administration. Her name had received support from Nobel Prize winner Bengt Holmstrom or former IMF chief economist Olivier Blanchard. But she, too, had received criticism on several fronts. Five commissioners (including the Spanish Josep Borrell) had asked in a letter to reassess the decision. A group of various platforms, and NGOs had also expressed their skepticism about it. They accused Fiona Scott Morton of a conflict of interest for having advised companies such as Apple, Amazon or Microsoft, which tend to fall precisely on the Commission’s radar due to their anti-competitive practices.