Quick Links

Airline Business and Law

ASPL 614

3 credits
Airline Business and Law.

Air & Space Law: Interdisciplinary analysis of the legal issues confronting airlines in such areas as economics, finance, securities, bankruptcy, pricing, marketing, distribution, alliances, joint-ventures and competition.

Offered by: Air and Space Law

  • Terms
    • Fall 2016
  • Instructors
    • Kuan-Wei Chen


This course, taught through a combination of interactive seminars and presentations by invited guest lecturers, introduces the student to an interdisciplinary analysis of the business and legal issues confronting airlines. Focus will be on such areas as economics, finance, securities, bankruptcy, pricing, marketing, distribution, alliances, joint-ventures and competition.

This course weaves the legal and regulatory issues airlines face into business principles of economics, finance, planning, operations, marketing, distribution, pricing, labour, cost containment, and inter-corporate alliances.  Relationships with airports, travel agents, computer reservations systems, and government also are explored, as are international dimensions of commercial air transportation. Economic theory and regulatory and policy issues involving safety, antitrust, licensing, securities issuances, aircraft finance, employment, environment, and sustainability are further examined.

Download the course outline of Airline Business and Law.

Method of Evaluation

  • 10% will be based on class participation and a 10 minute presentation on a topic of your choice that is listed in the Outline.
  • 20% of the final grade will be based on a 7-10 page essay on one of the topics listed in the Outline. The essay should be double spaced, 12 point font Times New Roman (10 point for footnotes), and is due on the last day of class. It can be the same topic as the presentation.
  • 70% of the grade in this course will be based on student performance on the final 24-hour take-home examination.

Professor Information: Kuan-Wei (David) Chen:  kuan-wei [dot] chen [at] mcgill [dot] ca (kuan-wei.chen@mcgill[dot]ca)

Office hours: Room 207, 3690 Peel Street (before class) or please contact me by email.  

Outline: Law school should prepare students to serve the needs of their clients. This course attempts to provide students with the necessary skills to serve the needs of commercial airlines and related industries. As such, this is more than a class in law. It is a class in business, economics, finance, marketing, law, regulation, history and policy. The emphasis is one of the world’s most important industries—commercial aviation.


Additional materials

The New Frontier (January 2014) [.pdf]

Airline Alliances: Why they form, how they work, how to improve them (Oct 2013) [.pdf]

Air Carrier Regulation: The US, EU, UK and Canadian examples (Oct 2013) [.pdf]

Airline Bankruptcies: the Post-Deregulation Epidemic (Oct 2013) [.pdf]

Airline Financial Woes: the Cyclical Crisis in Commercial Aviation (Oct 2013) [.pdf]

Competition and Antitrust Laws (Oct 2013) [.pdf]

The Airline Business (Oct 2013) [.pdf]

Airline Business & Law: Aircraft Acquisition, Finance & Leasing [.pdf]

The Airline Business (Nov 2011) [.pdf]

Airline Financial Woes (Nov 2011) [.pdf]

Airline Alliances (Nov 2011) [.pdf]

Antitrust and Competition Law in Air Transportation (Apr 2010) [.pdf]

Airline Alliances: Why They Form, How They Work (Nov 2011) [.pdf]

Five Reasons Why The Airline Industry Will Never Be Profitable [.pdf]

Supportable Capacity [.pdf]

Airline Industry Economic Outlook - Vaughn Cordle [.pdf]

The Financial Performance of the Airline Industry Post-Deregulation [.pdf]

Flying through turbulence [.pdf]

Airline Regulation: the US Example [.pdf]

How to Become a Certificated Carrier (2005 ed.) [.pdf]

Air Canada Law Branch, International and Regulatory Affairs Overview [.pdf]