3D Printing and Beyond
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3D Printing and Beyond

Intellectual Property and Regulation

Edited by Dinusha Mendis, Mark Lemley and Matthew Rimmer

This ground-breaking and timely contribution is the first and most comprehensive edited collection to address the implications for Intellectual Property (IP) law in the context of 3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing. Providing a coverage of IP law in three main jurisdictions including the UK, USA and Australia. 3D Printing and Beyond brings together a team of distinguished IP experts and is an indispensable starting point for researchers with an interest in IP, emerging technologies and 3D printing.
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Chapter 11: How democratized production challenges society’s ability to regulate

Deven Desai


This chapter seeks to explain why some emerging technologies pose more problems than others. Just because a technology disrupts and democratizes a practice does not make the change good. Technologies such as 3D printing and Crispr/Cas9 may help improve society and also increase the risk of catastrophic outcomes. These technologies may force changes in tort or contract law and in regulatory systems such as the Food and Drug Act or Environmental Protection Act. But emphasis on the law alone misses the larger point. Cost and ease alter risk management. Many can find out how to build a nuclear bomb, but the costs to build one are high. In contrast, new technologies promise to wed powerful, widespread knowledge with low production cost so that someone can engage in sophisticated creation in the proverbial garage. Such technology forces us to rethink the tools and nature of governance and regulation in the 21st century.

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