Emerging Technologies & Torts of the Future (Menlo Park, CA)

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03/29/2017 @ 8:30 am - 2:00 pm

Much of our nation’s future economic success, growth, and competitiveness will depend on a thriving and innovative technology sector that is changing all aspects of our daily lives, but a single reported accident tied to a new technology can lead to a rush for new, potentially harmful, regulations and litigation that can have a serious negative impact on our economy.

Join the U.S. Chamber Technology Engagement Center (C_TEC) and the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform (ILR) as we explore emerging technologies, such as the Internet of Things, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, Autonomous Vehicles, and others, and discuss how to prevent liability issues from threatening innovation.


8:30 – 9:00am: Registration and Breakfast 

9:00 – 9:15am: Opening Remarks by Lisa Rickard, President, US Chamber Institute for Legal Reform

9:15 – 9:30am:  Remarks by Michael Steep, Adjunct Professor and Executive Director of the Stanford Global Projects Center’s Digital Cities Program, Stanford University

9:30 – 9:50am:  Tech & Torts: In the Public Eye

9:50 – 10:35am: Tech & Torts: In Cyberspace 

The Internet of Things connects us with our devices and shares information among home appliances and systems, televisions, cars, and other everyday items. This massive data collection results in greater efficiency for businesses, smarter energy usage, and overall increased convenience for consumers.

This system of interconnectedness also provides more points of attack and opportunities to take over devices, steal data, or cause harm.  This panel will dive into the question of who is liable, as well as what companies are doing to secure our connected devices as these technologies proliferate.

Panelists Include

  • Megan L. Brown, Partner, Wiley Rein LLP
  • Laurie Hane, Deputy General Counsel, VMware
  • Jim Kaput, SVP, GC and Corporate Secretary, Zebra
  • Vikram Phatak, CEO & Chairman of the Board, NSS Labs, Inc.
  • Moderated by John Doherty, President & CEO, Civil Justice Association of California

10:35 – 11:10: Tech & Torts: In the Sky 

The potential for drones to revolutionize the delivery business is widely known, but there are also many opportunities to change how we farm, inspect homes and infrastructure, provide security, and more. As the uses for drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), grow, so do the questions of safety, privacy and risk to established infrastructure.

This panel will explore the evolving liability challenges that may impede the commercial use of this technology, and how to allow for our economy to receive the full benefits that this innovation can offer.

Panelists Include

  • Katherine Butler, GE Digital, General Counsel
  • Kevin Frederick, Vice President and Counsel, State Farm
  • Fatema Hamdani, Kraus Aerospace
  • Roger Nober, Executive Vice President, BNSF
  • Moderated by  Shelly Kapoor Collins, Managing Partner: Shatter Fund, Propeller Venture Capital

11:10 – 11:30am:  Tech & Torts: The Sharing Economy.  

  • Remarks by Matt Reagan, Associate General Counsel, Lyft

11:30 – Noon:  Networking Break 

Noon- 1:00pm:  Luncheon & Keynote

  • The Honorable Sean D. Reyes, Attorney General, State of Utah

1:00 – 1:10pm:  Networking Break 

1:10 – 1:30pm:  Tech & Torts: Digital Currency 

1:30 – 2:00pm:  Tech & Torts: On the Road

Autonomous vehicles (AV) aren’t just a technology that provides convenience; they have the capacity to change lives. It’s estimated that over 36,000 lives could be saved per year with the emersion of autonomous cars. AV also will offer freedom to communities such as the elderly and the handicapped which are often reliant on others for mobility. In the near future, the way we think about transportation will undergo a rapid change.

However, litigation could derail these advancements.  This panel will discuss ways to prevent the impediments of excessive liability and allow the technology to achieve its full potential.

Panelists Include

  • Ian Adams, Senior Fellow, R Street Institute
  • Emily Frascaroli, Counsel, Ford Motor Company
  • Danielle Lenth, Lead Legal Counsel for California, Allstate
  • Moderated by Elliot Katz, Associate, DLA Piper

2:00pm:  Closing Remarks by Tim Day, Senior Vice President, US Chamber Technology Engagement Center


This event is hosted by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. More details are available here.


8:30 AM

2:00 PM



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