Law and technology

The increasing growth of international trade and rapid advances in digital technology have brought Intellectual Property issues into the mainstream. New Zealand, despite having a low manufacturing base and as a net importer of technology, operates one of the world’s most protective IP regimes. Our researchers are questioning current policy and its impact on innovation.

They’re also investigating how new technologies interface with the law; Indigenous rights especially in relation to criminal law; media and the law; cyber-crime especially in relation to virtual worlds, human trafficking, organised crime and sentencing of criminal offences.

And our researchers are also contributing to the Christchurch rebuild. Dr Anna Kingsbury is part of a Ministry of Business, Innovation and Enterprise project that is looking at a network of sensors to be used to monitor structural health of infrastructure as the city rebuilds post-quake.

Dr Kingsbury is contracted to research the intellectual property aspects of the project, such as appropriate intellectual property frameworks for the technology, and legal issues around collection, ownership and use of the large data sets produced by the sensor technologies.

She is also looking more broadly at the legal frameworks for monitoring the health of public infrastructure, which is a growing concern internationally as many countries face the problems created by ageing infrastructure that is often not well-monitored.

Our researchers active in this area include: