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The freedom of drones: Balancing regulations in the flight ahead

Nov 2016

Assistant Professor Chen Siyuan

The rise in popularity of camera-carrying commercial drones for recreational use in Singapore and around the world has sparked interest and concerns.  Along with hot discussions about privacy, safety and commercial impact, how these unmanned aircraft are regulated has also been garnering increasing attention.

Are these concerns valid? What are the limitations and impact arising from the technology? What are the regulations like globally and in Singapore? Where and how is the best balance struck? How can regulations be improved in sensible and proportionate ways?

In this podcast, Assistant Professor Chen Siyuan from the SMU School of Law (SOL) covers not only the present situation on drones for a quick understanding on interests, concerns and the technology; he unravels insights about why some of these concerns are overstated, and how drone regulations around the world compare. He also proposes legislative tweaks that provide a better balance.

Assistant Professor Chen specialises in areas such as civil and criminal law and procedure, and has been studying about hotly debated laws, including Singapore’s Unmanned Aircraft Act passed in 2015 that regulates the use of drones in Singapore. His research paper “The Regulation of the Recreational Use of ‘Drones’ for Aerial Photography and Videography: Comparing Singapore’s Unmanned Aircraft Act with Other Legislation” was published in the Singapore Law Review journal.

He is expanding his research in this area as the law around drones are relatively undeveloped, but there is immense potential and rapid evolvement in technology and developments surrounding them.



Podcast copyright: Singapore Management University.


Additional information for reference:

Last updated on 29 Nov 2016.

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