An Autel Robotics X-Star Premium drone flies at InterDrone, a commercial drone conference and exposition, at the Paris Las Vegas on September 7, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Brian Wynne and Tim Day
In a town characterized by gridlock, the government-industry collaboration that brought about a long-awaited commercial drone rule is a model for how Washington can embrace and accelerate innovation.
Government and industry often clash over regulations, particularly when it comes to emerging and rapidly evolving technology. Innovation frequently outpaces regulations and Washington is often slow to catch up. This was particularly true for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) early on. The United States lagged behind other nations to commercialize the technology, including our neighbors to the north.
But in the past couple of years, something unique happened. As the industry pressed for commercial drone rules, regulators responded and embraced the need to move faster, adapt quicker and create flexible regulations that can accommodate future innovation. The unprecedented levels of government-industry collaboration on drones has ushered in a new era of aviation–and faster than many expected.