Drones, Law and Public Policy, Presentations, Keynote Speeches & Expert Appearances

Drones And Agriculture: Presentation At The Integrated Pest Management Symposium

GregMcNealDronesInAgricultureOn March 24, 2015 I will be presenting “Drones And Agriculture: The Legal Framework.”  The presentation will be part of the 8th Annual Integrated Pest Management Symposium in Salt Lake City, Utah.

The specific panel is part of a four part series that day, entitled “Advanced Technology for Precision IPM: Latest Developments with Examples from the Field and Legal Considerations.”

Law and Public Policy, Presentations, Keynote Speeches & Expert Appearances, Privacy, Publications, Articles, White Papers, Surveillance

Surveillance And the City To Be Presented At University of Denver Sturm College Of Law

CitySurveillanceMcNealI will be presenting my paper “Surveillance and the City” at the 3rd Annual Local Government Law Works-In-Progress Workshop at the University of Denver, Sturm College of Law.

Here is the paper abstract:

Sophisticated surveillance equipment is finding its way to local police departments. From drones, to automated license plate readers, to surplus military equipment, police departments have been acquiring powerful technology, oftentimes without the direct oversight of the elected representatives who are supposed to oversee them. Perhaps more problematic, that equipment is collecting massive amounts of data, and it is unclear whether state and local governments have the capacity or desire to manage vast stores of information in a way that both protects privacy and is publicly accountable.What should cities do? I will argue that hoping for reform through a court centric, warrant based approach is unworkable and counterproductive. Instead, governments should adopt a variety of transparency, accountability, and oversight centered methods of reform. Specifically, they should create duration based limits on persistent surveillance, enhanced data retention procedures, and implement new transparency and accountability measures. Cities should also recognize that while technology may create privacy harms, if regulated properly, it may be more protective of privacy than non-technologically enhanced surveillance methods. The article also recognizes that despite the potential benefits of new technology, the actual impact of new surveillance technologies may be one that disproportionately burdens minority communities.

The article explores six main questions. Will duration-based surveillance legislation that limits the aggregate amount of time the government may surveil a specific individual be more protective of rights than warrant based surveillance rules? How might data retention procedures (that require heightened levels of suspicion and increased procedural protections for accessing stored data) serve to protect privacy? What transparency and accountability measures will best ensure that government agencies are accountable? Will new technology, such as auto-redaction and accountability logs, make automated surveillance more protective of privacy than human surveillance? How can we ensure that new surveillance technologies do not disproportionately target certain communities? Do surveillance technologies require new forms of oversight?



Law and Public Policy

Google and Amazon Drones: Regulation vs. Innovation

Greg McNeal Drones StanfordOn February 9th I will be making a presentation at Stanford Law School.  The title of the talk is “Google and Amazon Drones: Regulation vs. Innovation.”  

The event is free and open to the public, so please stop by if you are in the area.

February 9, 2015 12:45pm – 2:00pm
Room 95

Professor Greg McNeal will be speaking about the interplay between regulation of private drones and the steps that private companies are taking to use drones in commerce. Commentary will be provided by Prof. Hank Greely.

Google and Amazon Drones: Regulation vs. Innovation Stanford Greg McNeal 

Law and Public Policy

Drones And the Future of Aerial Surveillance

UC Davis Law LogoTomorrow at UC Davis School of Law, I will be presenting my paper “Domestic Drones and the Future of Aerial Surveillance.”  The event will begin at 12 noon and Professor Elizabeth Joh will be providing commentary.  The event is open to the public, however the hosts are requesting pre-registration here.

Here is an excerpt from the paper abstract:

The use of drones systems raises serious questions about modern conceptions of privacy. This article examines the constitutional doctrine related to aerial surveillance and technology, and finds that current doctrine is unlikely to prevent the use of unmanned systems. The article proposes a series of legislative solutions intended to place surveillance by drones on the same legal footing as surveillance by manned aircraft — a status quo solution. The paper then analyzes the circumstances under which that new status quo may break down, and proposes remedies that could be implemented depending upon the nature of the emergent privacy harms.


Law and Public Policy

School of Law’s Greg McNeal Awarded Grant For Research On America’s Targeted Killing Policy

Greg McNeal Research GrantGreg McNeal, associate professor of law, has received $165,000 from the Carthage Foundation to research the U.S. practice of targeted killings. The research and resulting book will educate policymakers and the public about America’s use of lethal force against suspected terrorists.

Professor McNeal’s research is grounded in the idea that when the United States government kills people on traditional and non-traditional battlefields, bureaucrats play a key role in the killings yet have little visibility into the analytical processes that precede their final decisions. The book will be based on archival and field research and will explain, examine, and offer recommendations for enhancing the success, accountability, and effectiveness of U.S. policies conducted pursuant to America’s new way of warfare.

The research builds upon previous work conducted by Professor McNeal for his article “Targeted Killings and Accountability,” which was featured in the Georgetown Law Journal and won the 2013 Article of the Year award from the American National Section of the International Association of Penal Law. Professor McNeal also recently appeared on MSNBC to discuss the FAA’s selection of civilian drone testing sites in nine states.

Professor McNeal is an expert in international security with an active scholarly agenda focused on national security, warfare, surveillance, and new technologies. Since arriving at Pepperdine, he has twice been called upon to testify before Congress on matters related to national security and frequently consults with elected officials regarding proposed legislation. He recently consulted with and contributed to the development of two U.S. military field manuals aimed at preventing harm to civilians in conflict. He teaches criminal law, criminal procedure, and courses related to national security law and international affairs.

Law and Public Policy

A Discussion About Civilian Drones, Privacy and FAA Test Sites

Professor Gregory McNeal appeared on MSNBC to discuss the FAA’s selection of civilian drone testing sites in nine states.  During the six minute interview McNeal discussed the positive uses of drones, and some of the privacy concerns raised by drone critics.  One of his articles in Forbes was excerpted during the interview and was a central part of the discussion with MSNBC host Craig Melvin.  Professor McNeal has testified before Congress about the integration of civilian drones into U.S. airspace and has written about military drones in an award winning article forthcoming in the Georgetown Law Journal.  His research about military drones is funded by a $175,000 grant and will be published as a book next year.