Innovation Law & Policy Roundtable

Drones force a broad reconsideration of the laws and regulatory frameworks that protect vital interests like civil liberties, privacy, and security. But they also herald new inventions and new applications of existing technology. While there are a number of obvious issues related to drones, perhaps less evident is the extent to which legal and policy frameworks related to innovation will bear on the adoption and regulation of this new technology, in ways greatly related to the public interest.


Will patents create obstacles to the delivery of medical supplies via drones to disaster stricken areas? Will copyright and trademark interfere with new artistic endeavors? Can competition law create a fair playing field between startup drone entrepreneurs and aerospace giants?  If history is any indication, we are no better prepared to apply these laws to the drone phenomenon than we have been in applying them to smart phones, peer-to-peer technology, and the Internet. This roundtable will work towards identifying and documenting the various ways that innovation law and policy map onto the coming drone landscape.