Annual Conferences

Bridging the gap between law and technology

The Space, Cyber, and Telecommunications Law team hosts an impressive lineup of the world’s greatest minds annually at conferences in Washington DC and in Lincoln, Nebraska and at occasional events around the world. Explore our past conferences and learn about our upcoming events!

UPCOMING Conference:

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Our Annual Washington D.C. Conference will be held on 
Friday September 15, 2017  at The National Press Club 

Outer Space as a Commercial Domain and Warfighting Domain: Emerging Issues In Space Law

Registration is Open
Please Register by September 8th
Late registrations will be accepted, but may not have a printed name tag.

The outer space domain is increasing in stature as a full-fledged commercial domain.  Business plans and investments are expanding in new activities, such as asteroid mining, lunar and on-orbit facilities and rovers, and on-orbit satellite servicing.  Traditional commercial activities of communications and remote sensing satellites are seeing new business and technology plans, including large low-earth orbit constellations for internet and internet-of-things functions, and all ranges of sophistication for remote sensing applications.  Large-scale human space flight in terms of sub-orbital flights will soon be brought to market.  Civil space agencies are assessing how best to cooperate with and assist growing commercial applications as well as what independent programs, particularly in deep space, they should maintain.  Simultaneously, there is increasing concern among policy-makers that the space domain is at risk of no longer being a benign environment that militaries use as a force enabler and enhancer.  Rather, it has recently been characterized by leading military officials as a warfighting domain, like the traditional domains of land, sea and air.  These changes in the space domain raise significant issues of space law and policy the implications of which will be discussed by three distinct panels focused on the commercial, civil and national security space perspectives of the new and future space domain.

11:45 Lunch Begins

Noon-12:10PM: “Five in 10” 5 Big Ideas for Reform of Remote Sensing Licensing in 10 Minutes – Rich Leshner, Vice-President, Planet Labs (confirmed)

12:30PM-12:50PM Lunch Keynote: 5 Big Ideas for US International Space Leadership - Doug Loverro, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Space Policy (confirmed)

1PM-1:10PM: “Five in 10” – 5 Big Ideas for Reform in Commercial Space in 10 Minutes – Mike Gold, Chair, COMSTAC (confirmed)

1:10PM-2:20PM Panel 1 – Emerging Issues in Commercial Space Regulation

Moderators: Franceska Schroeder, Principal, Fish & Richardson (confirmed) & Matthew Schaefer, Professor & Co-Director, Space, Cyber and Telecom Law Program (confirmed)

  • Panelist 1: Dr. George Nield, Assoc. Administrator for Commercial Space Transportation (confirmed)
  • Panelist 2: Caryn Schenewerk, Senior Counsel and Director of Government Affairs, SpaceX
  • Panelist 3: Brian Israel, General Counsel, Planetary Resources (confirmed)
  • Panelist 4: Charity Weeden, Senior Director of Policy, Satellite Industry Association
  • Panelist 6: Dennis Burnett, Vice-President, Kymeta & Adjunct Professor, Univ. of Nebraska (confirmed)

2:30 PM-3:15 PM – Panel 2 – Emerging Issues Facing NASA and US Civil Space in Commercial and International Law Matters

Moderator: Marcia Smith, Editor – Space Policy Online (confirmed)

  • Panelist 1: Courtney Bailey, Assoc. General Counsel for Commercial and IP Law (confirmed)
  • Panelist 2: Robin Frank, Assoc. General Counsel for International Law (confirmed)
  • Panelist 3: Ken Hodgkins, Director for the Office of Space and Advanced Technology in Bureau of Oceans, Environment and Science, US State Department (invited)

3:30PM – 3:50PM Afternoon Keynote: Professor Frans von der Dunk, Univ. of Nebraska College of Law – the International Landscape in Commercial and Civil Space Law Matters, followed by commentary by Fabio Tranchetti, Co-Director, Institute of Space Law and Strategy, Beihang University, on China’s Authorization Regime – New Developments

4:05PM-4:55PM – Panel 3 – Emerging Issues in National Security Space

Moderators: Professor Jack Beard, Univ. of Nebraska College of Law (confirmed)

  • Panelist 1: Professor David Koplow, Georgetown University Law Center (confirmed)
  • Panelist 2: Peter Hays, Ph.D., Adjunct Professor, Space Policy Institute, George Washington University (confirmed)
  • Panelist 3: Myland Pride, Dir. of Government & Legislative Affairs, Intelsat (confirmed)

4:55PM Wrap-Up

5:00PM Adjourn

Press is welcome at this event and there is a presumption that statements are on the record, however please be aware that in the past many speakers have requested to speak off the record. We have instructed speakers to notify their panel moderator and to announce their preference before speaking. It is possible many panels may include multiple "off-the-record" speakers. 

This conference is not being streamed live due to our agreements with some panelists. Portions are being recorded, but will be used strictly for internal purposes.

If you have any questions or concerns please contact: Elsbeth Magilton , Space, Cyber, & Telecommunications Law Program Executive Director at


Please Register by September 8th
Late registrations will be accepted, but may not have a printed name tag.


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