Ryan Abbott

Ryan Abbott is a Professor of Law and Health Sciences at the University of Surrey School of Law.
Summary

Ryan Abbott, MD, JD, MTOM, PhD is a renowned academic and professional with expertise in law, health sciences, and intellectual property. He currently holds the position of Professor of Law and Health Sciences at the University of Surrey School of Law and serves as an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.

Professor Abbott has made significant contributions to the field through his extensive publications on topics encompassing law and technology, health law, and intellectual property. His works have been featured in prestigious legal, medical, and scientific books and journals. Notably, he authored the acclaimed book "The Reasonable Robot: Artificial Intelligence and the Law," published by Cambridge University Press in 2020.

His research and insights have garnered widespread attention in the media, with prominent coverage in The Times, the New York Times, the Financial Times, and other notable outlets. Professor Abbott is a sought-after speaker and frequently delivers keynote lectures and presentations at renowned academic institutions such as MIT, Stanford, Oxford, and Cambridge. He also shares his expertise in various governmental and industry settings, including the World Intellectual Property Organization, the World Trade Organization, and companies like Google, IBM, and Swiss Re.

In recognition of his influence and accomplishments in the field of intellectual property, Professor Abbott was named one of the fifty most influential individuals in intellectual property by Managing Intellectual Property magazine in 2019.

Beyond his academic pursuits, Professor Abbott actively contributes to dispute resolution as a mediator and arbitrator with JAMS and other national and international dispute resolution service providers. He holds accreditation as a mediator from CEDR and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (FCIArb). With experience as both a legal practitioner and general counsel in the life sciences and high-tech industries, he brings a wealth of practical knowledge to his work.

In addition to his legal expertise, Professor Abbott holds multiple professional licenses, including being a licensed physician, patent attorney, and acupuncturist in the United States. He is also a solicitor advocate in England and Wales and is board-certified by the American Board of Legal Medicine (ABLM). Professor Abbott completed his education at esteemed institutions, including the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine (MD), Yale Law School (JD), University of Surrey School of Law (PhD), Emperor's College (MTOM), and the University of California, Los Angeles (BS), where he graduated with the highest honors.

Biography

Professor Ryan Abbott is the author of The Reasonable Robot: Artificial Intelligence and the Law published in 2020 by Cambridge University Press, and he has published widely on issues associated with law and technology, health law, and intellectual property in leading legal, medical, and scientific books and journals. 

Professor Ryan Abbott has worked as a partner in legal practice, and he has been outside general counsel to life science companies. He has served as a consultant or expert for international organizations, academic institutions and non-profit enterprises including the United Kingdom Parliament, European Commission, World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). Professor Abbott has also worked as an expert witness which has included testifying in U.S. federal court.

Professor Abbott is a CEDR-accredited mediator and a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (FCIArb). He is a mediator and arbitrator with JAMS and a panellist with a variety of national and international dispute resolution service providers. Prior to that, Professor Abbott worked as a partner in legal practice, where he primarily focused on transactional matters and intellectual property litigation in the life sciences, and he has been the general counsel of a biotechnology company.

Professor Ryan Abbott is a licensed physician, attorney, and acupuncturist in the United States, as well as a solicitor advocate in England and Wales. He is board certified by the American Board of Legal Medicine.

Professor Abbott is a graduate of the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine (M.D.), the Yale Law School (J.D.), the University of Surrey School of Law (PhD) as well as a Summa Cum Laude graduate from Emperor’s College (M.T.O.M.) and a Summa Cum Laude graduate from the University of California, Los Angeles (B.S.). He is a registered patent attorney with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and a member of the California and New York State Bars. He is also a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA).


Vision

Ryan Abbott's vision, as articulated in his book "The Reasonable Robot: Artificial Intelligence and the Law," is a thought-provoking exploration of the intersection between AI and the legal system. Abbott skillfully navigates various domains, such as tax, criminal law, patent and copyright law, and tort liability, to shed light on the impending clash between AI and the law.

At the core of Abbott's argument is the notion of legal neutrality. He posits that as AI becomes increasingly integrated into these fields, the law should treat AI and human behaviour on an equal footing. In other words, there should be no discrimination or preferential treatment between the actions of AI systems and human agents.

The realization of this thesis carries significant implications for our collective future. One notable consequence is the levelling of the playing field between robots and human workers. By ensuring legal neutrality, Abbott proposes preventing the inefficient subsidization of automation through taxes. This approach would help to avoid undue advantages for AI systems over human labour, fostering fairness and sustainability in the job market.

Moreover, embracing legal neutrality in the realm of autonomous vehicles could be a major breakthrough for public health. Human errors contribute to numerous accidents and fatalities on the road. By treating AI-driven vehicles and human drivers equally under the law, there is potential for a substantial reduction in road accidents, injuries, and fatalities. This shift could save countless lives and significantly improve public safety.

Abbott's vision of legal neutrality also opens the doors to increased innovation, creation, and improved living standards. By removing discriminatory barriers and fostering an environment that treats AI fairly, there is greater potential for advancements in technology, science, and various industries. This, in turn, can lead to improved productivity, economic growth, and overall societal well-being.


Recognition and Awards
Professor Abbott’s research has been featured prominently in the media, including in the New York Times, Financial Times, Forbes, and VICE. He routinely gives keynote lectures and presents internationally in academic (e.g., MIT, Stanford, Oxford, Cambridge), government (e.g., World Intellectual Property Organization, World Trade Organization, UK Intellectual Property Office), and industry (e.g., AIPPI, American Chemical Society, INTERPAT) settings. Managing Intellectual Property magazine named him as one of the fifty most influential people in intellectual property in 2019.

References
Ryan Abbott
Nationality
American
Residence
London, United Kingdom
Occupation
Professor of Law and Health Sciences at the University of Surrey
Known for
Books: The Reasonable Robot: Artificial Intelligence and the Law
Accolades
Featured in the New York Times, Financial Times, Forbes, and VICE; Top 50 most influential people in intellectual property in 2019.
Education
University of California
Social Media
Fri Mar 01 2024
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