2019 TPI Aspen Forum Agenda

Keynotes and Fireside Chats

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Breakout Sessions

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Keynotes and Fireside Chats:

Susan AtheyThe Economics of Technology Professor, Professor of Economics, School of Humanities and Sciences, Senior Fellow, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, Founding Director, Shared Prosperity and Innovation Initiative, and Associate Director, Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence

Makan DelrahimAssistant Attorney General, Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice

Jaron Lanier, Computer Scientist, Composer, Artist and Author

Phil WeiserAttorney General, State of Colorado, Professor, University of Colorado Law School

A Chat with Federal Trade Commissioners

The Honorable Noah Joshua PhillipsCommissioner, Federal Trade Commission

The Honorable Rebecca Kelly SlaughterCommissioner, Federal Trade Commission

Julie Brill (moderator), Corporate Vice President & Deputy General Counsel, Microsoft Corporation and Former Commissioner, Federal Trade Commission

Makan Delrahim


When Will Tech Make Us More Productive?

One of the biggest and most consequential puzzles today is why productivity growth remains so low despite rapid technological innovation. Solving the puzzle is crucial because productivity growth is necessary for economic growth, which itself is necessary, though not sufficient, to make everyone in society better off. Without it, one person’s economic gain is another’s economic loss. Will we turn a corner and finally see economic growth? New research over the past few years is focusing on the effects of tech on productivity, bringing us closer to solving the productivity puzzle. This panel will discuss the latest research on productivity and what it implies about the future of economic growth.

Susan AtheyThe Economics of Technology Professor, Professor of Economics, School of Humanities and Sciences, Senior Fellow, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, Founding Director, Shared Prosperity and Innovation Initiative, and Associate Director, Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence

Carol Corrado, Senior Advisor and Research Director, Economics Program, The Conference Board

Leonard Nakamura, Emeritus Economist, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia

Pai-Ling Yin, Associate Professor of Clinical Entrepreneurship and Director, Technology Commercialization Initiative, University of Southern California, Marshall School of Business

Scott Wallsten (moderator), President and Senior Fellow, Technology Policy Institute

Techlash: Why Did It Happen and What is the Right Response?

The remarkable benefits of the digital revolution once meant that Silicon Valley innovators could do no wrong. Today, those same companies are facing intense criticism from across the political spectrum, being held responsible for a range of political, economic and social ills, and simply for being too big and powerful. This panel will debate the origins and validity of techlash critiques and the appropriate responses by government and the companies themselves.

Jane Bambauer, Professor of Law, James E. Rogers College of Law, The University of Arizona

Andrew Keen, Author, Founder & Executive Producer, FutureCast, and Contributor, TechCrunch

Randal C. Picker, James Parker Hall Distinguished Service Professor of Law, Senior Fellow at the Computation Institute of the University of Chicago Argonne National Laboratory, University of Chicago The Law School

Hal Varian, Chief Economist, Google

Thomas M. Lenard (moderator), Senior Fellow and President Emeritus, Technology Policy Institute

How is Washington Affecting the Entrepreneurship Ecosystem?

Entrepreneurship is a key component of a vibrant economy, particularly in technology. Venture capital investment in the U.S. reached a record high in 2018, although the number of deals decreased since its peak in 2015. But VC investment increased even more in Asia. The share of global VC spending in the U.S. decreased from nearly 70 percent in 2013 to just over 50 percent in 2018, while Asia’s share increased from 14 to 37 percent in the same period. Additionally, the rate of new firm formation in the U.S. has still not recovered from the Great Recession. What happened? How do we compare to other times and countries? Are specific policy issues, like privacy, net neutrality, and trade affecting investment? This panel will discuss the puzzles, challenges, and implications raised by these trends.

Gil Beyda, Managing Director at Comcast Ventures and Founder and Managing Partner at Genacast Ventures

Maryann Feldman, Heninger Distinguished Professor in the Department of Public Policy, University of North Carolina, Adjunct Professor of Finance at Kenan-Flagler Business School, and Research Director at UNC Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise

Dimitri Sirota, CEO & Co-Founder, BigID

Jamie Susskind, Vice President, Policy and Regulatory Affairs, Consumer Technology Association

Sarah Oh (moderator), Senior Fellow, Technology Policy Institute

The Fractured Internet: Is It Too Late For Humpty Dumpy?

Once upon a time, the Internet operated more or less under the same rules everywhere around the globe. In principle, anyone, anywhere in the world, with access to the World Wide Web, could access the same content in the same way. That is no longer true. Internet balkanization, or the "Splinternet," that many warned about for years is now becoming the status quo. Differing rules around the world regarding privacy and hate speech, law enforcement, China's Great Firewall, copyright and other IP protection, and individual countries' particular views on how they should be able to govern the Internet inside their borders means that, as a practical matter, we may no longer have a single Internet, but many Internets operating under different rules, with those connected unable to access certain content available elsewhere.

Fiona Alexander, Distinguished Policy Strategist in Residence, School of International Service, American University

Christopher Martin, Head of Region, Asia and US, Access Partners


Masahiko Nittono, General Manager and Chief Corporate Representative, NTT Corporation

Shane Tews, Visiting Fellow, American Enterprise Institute


David Gross (moderator), Partner and Co-Chair, Telecom, Media and Technology Practice, Wiley Rein LLP

How Many Gs Do We Need (And Does the U.S. Have to Be First?)

The discussion of 5G rollout has become a crucible for nearly every policy fear and dream. Unlike 2, 3, and 4G upgrades, it subsumes not just wireless policy, but also national security, trade, innovation, cybersecurity, digital divides, and overall competitiveness. But many questions remain to be answered. To what extent are wireless and wireline likely to be substitutes versus complements in a few years, and how does the answer affect an optimal investment strategy? What are the remaining obstacles to rollout, and is it up to wireless providers alone to solve those problems, or are they broader national or international policy issues? Given that building out new technologies is costly, what is the optimal transition timeline – is the country first to 5G necessarily going to be the country that reaps the most benefits from it? Will it really affect rural or low-income connectivity, or are those separate issues? Does the new technology introduce new security concerns? This panel will address these and other connectivity and investment issues.

Rob Alderfer, Vice President, Technology Policy, CableLabs

Donna Epps, Senior Vice President for Public Policy and Strategic Alliances,Verizon Communications


Dale Hatfield, Executive Fellow, Silicon Flatirons Center for Law, Technology, and Entrepreneurship


Thomas Hazlett, Hugh H. Macaulay Endowed Professor of Economics in the John E. Walker Department of Economics, Clemson University

Cathryn RossDirector, Regulatory Affairs, BT Group


Sarah Oh (moderator), President and Senior Fellow, Technology Policy Institute

What is the Future of Entertainment and Media?

The internet has destroyed the value of certain old media (newspapers, magazines, etc.), and created large new media businesses (streaming OTT, Fortnite, etc.). In the case of music, it first destroyed and subsequently super-charged economics. This panel of experts from movies, music, games, and academia will discuss: a) shifting power dynamics between content, distribution platforms and consumers; b) whether the internet enables more media voices or centralizes consumer access points; c) potential conflicts of interest in the media ecosystem; d) key media industry learnings and cautionary tales; and, e) the role of government in media, given consumers migration to technology and online platforms.

Delara Derakhshani, Senior Counsel, Tech Policy at Entertainment Software Association​

Mitch Glazier, Chairman & CEO, Recording Industry Association of America

Jean PrewittPresident and Chief Executive Officer, Independent Film & Television Alliance

Michael D. SmithProfessor of Information Technology and Marketing, Carnegie Mellon Unviersity

Jan van VoornExecutive Vice President and Chief of Global Content Protection, Motion Picture Association of America

Laura Martin (moderator), Senior Analyst, Needham and Company


Additional Speakers TBA

C-Band: Endgame?

In July, the FCC asked for yet more input into how it should resolve the debate over the C-Band, which includes 500 MHz of particularly desirable spectrum between 3.7 and 4.2 GHz and currently allocated for satellite use. While there is widespread agreement that at least some C-Band spectrum should be available for terrestrial uses instead of satellite uses, and that the reallocation should happen as quickly as possible, there has been robust debate about how much to reallocate and how to do it. The largest satellite companies that currently use the band have proposed a private sale. T-Mobile has proposed an incentive auction similar to the one the FCC recently completed for broadcast spectrum. Broadcasters and cable companies, meanwhile, are wary of reallocations that may disrupt the airwaves that they use to distribute programming. With the FCC's quick timeline for responding to its July questions, are we reaching the endgame? How soon can we expect some of this spectrum to be available for 5G? What final arguments should the FCC consider, and what outcome is most likely? This panel will give the protagonists one last chance to argue their case and analysts the opportunity to predict what is likely to happen.

Claude Aiken, President and Chief Executive Officer, Wireless Internet Service Providers Association (WISPA)

Kathleen Ham, Senior Vice President, Government Affairs, T-Mobile

Ross Lieberman, Senior Vice President of Government Affairs, ACA Connects

Peter Pitsch, Head of Advocacy and Government Relations. C-Band Alliance

Blair Levin (moderator), Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution

Breakout Sessions:

Policy Roadmaps For a 1st or 2nd Term Administration:

FTC-DOJ: Competition and Privacy

It’s never too early to start planning for the next presidential transition, especially when the subjects concern big tech, which is already an issue in the campaign. The Department of Justice Antitrust Division and the Federal Trade Commission are the central players in increasingly intensive debates about antitrust and privacy policy. TPI has assembled a group of experts to discuss the most important issues that the next transition report for these agencies should address.  


Alden F. Abbott, General Counsel, Federal Trade Commission

Neil Chilson, Senior Research Fellow for Technology and Innovation, Charles Koch Institute

Susan Creighton, Partner, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati

Svetlana Gans, Associate General Counsel, NCTA – The Internet & Television Association

Brian Huseman, Vice President, Public Policy, Amazon

Ginger Zhe Jin, Professor of Economics, University of Maryland, College Park and Scholar, Amazon

Lawrence J. White, Robert Kavesh Professorship in Economics, Leonard N. Stern School of Business, New York University

Thomas M. Lenard (moderator), President Emeritus and Senior Fellow, Technology Policy Institute

FCC-NTIA: Connectivity and Telecom

Connectivity will continue to be a key issue for economic growth and productivity in the next presidential term regardless of the election winner. Broadband has already become an issue in the Democratic primary. The Federal Communications Commission and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration will be at the center of any policies focused on the relevant issues. What key issues will the two agencies have to face in the next few years? What key issues should they face in the next few years? This expert group will tackle these questions in order to tee up the issues campaigns and, ultimately, a transition team should focus on. 

Blair Levin, Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution

Ruth Milkman, Partner, Quadra Partners

Gregory Rosston, Director, Public Policy Program, Stanford University and Deputy Director, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research

Jay Schwarz, Vice President, Public Policy, Comcast

Shane Tews, Visiting Fellow, American Enterprise Institute

Bryan Tramont, Managing Partner, Wilkinson Barker Knauer, LLP

Scott Wallsten (moderator), President and Senior Fellow, Technology Policy Institute

Blockchain: I'm From Washington and I'm Here to.... Help?

Blockchain and cryptocurrency has captured the attention of technologists and regulators around the world. What are the most pressing concerns and questions from legislators today? This breakout session will discuss a wide range of topics from securities, banking, monetary policy, consumer protection, and food safety. How are federal agencies engaging with entrepreneurs and how can the industry help policymakers understand the new technology? 

Stuart Alderoty, General Counsel, Ripple

Lisa GoldmanSenior Counsel, Consumer Protection Subcommittee, House Energy & Commerce Committee

Lily Liu, Co-Founder & Chief Financial Officer, Earn.com

Jodee Rich, Co-Founder & CEO, PeopleBrowsr and NFT.Kred

Bill RockwoodFinancial & Technology Policy Adviser, Congressman Darren Soto (FL–09)

Landon ZinaLegislative Director, Congressman Tom Emmer (Blockchain Caucus Co-Chair)

Sarah Oh (moderator), Senior Fellow, Technology Policy Institute

Embedding a Culture of Evidence-Based Policy in Government

In the beginning, the economist’s holy grail was benefit-cost analysis to inform public policy. Such analysis has been used to evaluate major federal regulations since 1980, with some success.More recently, the phrase “evidence-based policy” has crept into the lexicon. In 2018, President Trump signed into law the Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking. Whether the law will be effective is still an open question, as Hahn recently explained in an article published in Science.Bob Hahn, TPI Senior Fellow and former member of the U.S. Evidence-based Policymaking Commission, is building a new, robust agenda for studying and implementing EBP. This working group will consider which tools are likely to be most effective for informing policy makers in the current challenging political landscape.

Tim Bradley, Minister Counsellor for Industry, Science, and Education, Embassy of Australia

Peter FatelnigMinister-Counsellor for Digital Economy Policy, Delegation of the European Union to the United States of America

Cathryn RossAccount Executive at Arthur J. Gallagher and Co.

Hal VarianChief Economist, Google

Robert Hahn (moderator), Senior Fellow, Technology Policy Institute