USD Professor Releases Report on Civilian Drone Use

SAN DIEGO, CA: University of San Diego’s Dr. Austin Choi-Fitzpatrick, assistant professor of Political Sociology with the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies, and his student co-authors, have released a report today detailing the use of drones for non-violent use.

The report, “Up in the Air,” includes an analysis of drone usage worldwide to better understand civilian drone use and to explore regulatory responses. Some key findings from the report are included below:

  • 2012 was a breakout period that saw non-violent use overtake use in conflict
  • Legislation is sparse and uneven, but growing
  • Forty-one state laws have been passed in twenty-eight states
  • American regulations are long overdue

The report concludes that the United States has the most reported drone usage. It also highlights the inconsistent nature of drone legislation, and the “catch-up” process that legislators have to engage in to deal with rapidly increasing drone use.

Today, April 13 at 12:45 p.m., a camera-equipped medium-altitude balloon will be launched in front of the Kroc School. The launch will highlight grassroots uses of new technologies like drones and balloons.

To read the full report, click here.

For aerial drone footage from Dr. Choi-Fitzpatrick’s study, please click here.

Dr. Choi-Fitzpatrick is available to discuss the report and his findings by calling 619/260-4659 x4.

About the University of San Diego

The University of San Diego sets the standard for an engaged, contemporary Catholic university where innovative Changemakers confront humanity’s urgent challenges. With more than 8,000 students from 75 countries and 44 states, USD is the youngest independent institution on the U.S. News & World Report list of top 100 universities in the United States. USD’s eight academic divisions include the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Business, the Shiley-Marcos School of Engineering, the School of Law, the School of Leadership and Education Sciences, the Hahn School of Nursing and Health Science, the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies, and the Division of Professional and Continuing Education. USD recently concluded our successful $317M Leading Change: The Campaign for USD, which represented the most ambitious fundraising effort in the history of the university. In September 2016, USD introduced Envisioning 2024, a strategic plan that capitalizes on the university’s recent progress and aligns new strategic goals with current strengths to help shape a vision for the future as the university looks ahead to its 75th anniversary in the year 2024.


Pamela Gray Payton
(619) 260-4681