Privacy Localism: A New Research Agenda



November 3, 2017
NYU School of Law

Abstract: The election of Donald Trump is widely expected to bring a dramatic retreat from Obama administration support for privacy regulation at the federal level. Republican commissioners on the Federal Communications Commission have already indicated their intention to pursue reversal of many Obama administration policies and last April the President signed legislation repealing the FCC privacy rule. With such changes underway, state and local regulators, particularly those in populous “blue” states, such as New York, California and Washington, are poised to take on an increasingly important role. Recent local initiatives include draft ordinances that require local police departments to publish surveillance impact reports describing the capabilities and safeguards of powerful new surveillance technologies as a condition of deploying them. City officials are also paying more attention to the data privacy implications of smart city initiatives. At the state-level, officials are resisting requests by the Trump administration to access state voter registration databases. Academic experts on administrative law, privacy, federalism, and local governance was joined by policymakers, industry representatives and privacy advocates to present and discuss a variety of perspectives on the legal, empirical and policy implications of this trend toward “privacy localism.”

Organizers:  Katherine J. Strandburg (ILI Faculty), Ira Rubinstein (ILI Senior Fellow), Bilyana Petkova (ILI Fellow, Assistant Professor, Maastricht University)

Co-sponsors: Information Law Institute and Future of Privacy Forum


8:30-9:00 Registration and Coffee

Opening Remarks from the Organizers

9:00-10:30 Panel 1: Privacy @ the City video

9:00-9:15 Federalism and Localism

Nestor Davidson, Fordham Urban Law Center

9:15-9:30 Urban Governance

Kathleen Morris, Golden Gate University Law School

9:30-9:45 Privacy Localism

Ira Rubinstein, NYU Information Law Institute

Commenters: Bilyana Petkova, NYU & Maastricht University and Daniel Francis, Harvard Climenko Fellow

10:30-11:00 Coffee break

11:00-12:30 Panel 2: Local Governance of Policing, Surveillance and Data video

11:00-11:15 Local Policing and Surveillance

Andrew Ferguson, University of the District of Columbia

11:15-11:30 Federal Funding and Local Police Surveillance Technology

Catherine Crump, Berkeley Center for Law & Technology

Commenter: Maria Ponomarenko, NYU Policing Project

12:30-1:30 Lunch

1:30-2:30 Panel 3: Big Data @ Smart Cities video

1:30-1:45 City Open Data: Projects and Policies

Jan Whittington, University of Washington Department of Urban Design & Planning

1:45-2:00 Smart Cities

Kelsey Finch, Future of Privacy Forum and International Association of Privacy Professionals

Commenter: Stefaan Verhulst, NYU Governance Laboratory

By Invitation Only:

3:00-5:30 Round Table with Local Administration, Civil Society and Privacy Professionals

Ginger Armbruster, Chief Privacy Officer, City of Seattle
Steffi Bryson, Senior Public Policy Associate, Uber
Alyssa Harvey Dawson, General Counsel, Sidewalk Labs
Miguel Gamiño, Jr., Chief Technology Officer, New York City Mayor’s Office of Technology and Innovation 
Jeremy Heffner, Product Manager and Senior Data Scientist, HunchLab
Brian Hofer, Chair, City of Oakland Privacy Advisory Commission
Michael Price, Senior Counsel, Brennan Center's Liberty and National Security Program
Kara Selke, VP of Strategic Partners and Privacy, StreetLight Data

Moderator: Joel Reidenberg, Professor, Fordham University School of Law