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Herding Cats: Governing Distributed Innovation [Abstract]

August 2019

Citation: ELR 10797

Author: Albert C. Lin

Do-It-Yourself biology, 3D printing, and the sharing economy are equipping ordinary people with new powers to shape their biological, physical, and social environments. This phenomenon of distributed innovation is yielding new goods and services, greater economic productivity, and new opportunities for fulfillment. Distributed innovation also brings new environmental, health, and security risks that demand oversight, yet conventional government regulation may be poorly suited to address these risks. Dispersed and dynamic, distributed innovation requires the development of more flexible tools for oversight and government collaboration with private partners in governance. This Article considers three types of responses to the challenges raised by distributed innovation.

Albert C. Lin is a Professor of Law at the University of California, Davis, School of Law.

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