Outside the US, the commercial development of shale gas and oil will need to overcome significant legal and regulatory challenges if it is ever to take off. This study identifies several key features that have contributed to shale's economic success in the US and applies them to three country settings where policy decisions have been taken to advance a shale resources agenda: Argentina, Colombia and the United Kingdom. Each country is at an initial stage in the development of its resources and has explored various legal instruments to advance its policy aims. In reviewing their experiences, we may be able to identify the emergence of a dedicated body of good or best practices. The study confirms that governments tend initially to rely heavily on established hydrocarbons regulatory approaches, where they exist, but that these quickly prove fragile or insufficient, and need to be supplemented by new measures and institutions targeted specifically at meeting the challenges arising from ownership, infrastructure (including local content) and consent which may otherwise inhibit investment in this energy sector.