Grounding China’s drones: Leading drone maker DJI’s Brendan Schulman on U.S. regulatory challenges


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A congressional bill and a draft executive order threaten to prevent U.S. government agencies from using drones made in China or that contain Chinese components. Concerns over security issues may end successful programs by the Department of the Interior and other agencies using Chinese-made drones for a huge range of purposes. Brendan Schulman, vice president for public policy and legal affairs of leading Chinese drone maker DJI, joins Kaiser and Jeremy to discuss.

3:16: A history of DJI

16:04: Shenzhen and the consumer electronic supply chain

18:24: DJI under legal scrutiny in the U.S. and abroad

29:01: The role of the U.S. Congress in pushing back against Chinese tech

39:18: Drone applications in the fight against COVID-19


Jeremy: Fine Music Radio, a Cape Town–based radio station that plays jazz and classical music, and New Frame, a media company that covers news in Africa.

Brendan: The book Eternal Life, by Dara Horn.

Kaiser: Two pieces from The New Yorker: How does the coronavirus behave inside a patient?, by Siddhartha Mukherjee, and The contrarian coronavirus theory that informed the Trump administration, by Isaac Chotiner.

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This podcast was edited and produced by Kaiser Kuo and Jason MacRonald.