1
Background

The Workshop on U.S. Civil Space Policy was developed based on an idea proposed by Space Studies Board (SSB) chair Charles Kennel that was refined during discussions at the SSB Executive Committee meeting in August 2008. The workshop theme recognizes that, with the end of the Cold War, space and Earth science research and space exploration are no longer dominated by competition between two superpowers. Furthermore, numerous countries and regions now have very active space programs, and that number is increasing. Maturing capabilities worldwide have created a plethora of potential partners for cooperative space endeavors, while at the same time heightening competitiveness in the international space arena. While international cooperation can make a particular program more affordable to an individual nation, the overall cost of the initiative tends to increase, as does the overall management complexity. Cooperation and coordination1 tap into an extended base of scientific and technological expertise and can add robustness and redundancy through the use of multiple systems (e.g., launchers, launch facilities, ground networks, in-orbit transportation, and so on). They can also serve to enhance the political legitimacy of an initiative. Workshop planners felt that all these aspects needed to be taken into consideration in assessing the effectiveness of specific past and present cooperation or coordination mechanisms and in seeking to determine how best to proceed in the future, recognizing that the world is becoming more globalized.

International cooperation and coordination are topics that have been addressed in numerous SSB workshops and study committees over the past two decades. They have occurred extensively in space science, Earth science research and applications from space, human spaceflight and microgravity science, and, to a lesser extent, satellite telecommunications, satellite navigation, and launchers.

Currently, most space-faring nations have space-related aspirations that exceed the resources available to them individually. Furthermore, additional countries are working to enter the field. Thus, it was considered to be an appropriate time to review the international cooperation and coordination mechanisms that have or have not worked in the past to identify the most effective approaches to such cooperation and coordination in the future. Such a review should include how best to involve nations that have new and emerging space capabilities. Lessons to be found in the competitive space arena might also have relevance to developing future modes of cooperation. Among the factors to emphasize in identifying effective approaches is that they maximize the use of available resources, minimize duplication of effort, and make optimum use of the broad and ever-increasing base of scientific and technical talent that exists internationally.

1

International cooperation and coordination on both a bilateral and multilateral basis have played a significant role in civil space activities since the beginning of the space age. Generally speaking, cooperation involves two or more countries working together, each contributing to the execution of a single mission. Coordination involves two or more countries that keep each other apprised of their activities in order to minimize duplication of effort and to obtain the maximum return through complementary activities.



The National Academies | 500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement



Below are the first 10 and last 10 pages of uncorrected machine-read text (when available) of this chapter, followed by the top 30 algorithmically extracted key phrases from the chapter as a whole.
Intended to provide our own search engines and external engines with highly rich, chapter-representative searchable text on the opening pages of each chapter. Because it is UNCORRECTED material, please consider the following text as a useful but insufficient proxy for the authoritative book pages.

Do not use for reproduction, copying, pasting, or reading; exclusively for search engines.

OCR for page 6
1 Background The Workshop on U.S. Civil Space Policy was developed based on an idea proposed by Space Studies Board (SSB) chair Charles Kennel that was refined during discussions at the SSB Executive Committee meeting in August 2008. The workshop theme recognizes that, with the end of the Cold War, space and Earth science research and space exploration are no longer dominated by competition between two superpowers. Furthermore, numerous countries and regions now have very active space programs, and that number is increasing. Maturing capabilities worldwide have created a plethora of potential partners for cooperative space endeavors, while at the same time heightening competitiveness in the international space arena. While international cooperation can make a particular program more affordable to an individual nation, the overall cost of the initiative tends to increase, as does the overall management complexity. Cooperation and coordination1 tap into an extended base of scientific and technological expertise and can add robustness and redundancy through the use of multiple systems (e.g., launchers, launch facilities, ground networks, in-orbit transportation, and so on). They can also serve to enhance the political legitimacy of an initiative. Workshop planners felt that all these aspects needed to be taken into consideration in assessing the effectiveness of specific past and present cooperation or coordination mechanisms and in seeking to determine how best to proceed in the future, recognizing that the world is becoming more globalized. International cooperation and coordination are topics that have been addressed in numerous SSB workshops and study committees over the past two decades. They have occurred extensively in space science, Earth science research and applications from space, human spaceflight and microgravity science, and, to a lesser extent, satellite telecommunications, satellite navigation, and launchers. Currently, most space-faring nations have space-related aspirations that exceed the resources available to them individually. Furthermore, additional countries are working to enter the field. Thus, it was considered to be an appropriate time to review the international cooperation and coordination mechanisms that have or have not worked in the past to identify the most effective approaches to such cooperation and coordination in the future. Such a review should include how best to involve nations that have new and emerging space capabilities. Lessons to be found in the competitive space arena might also have relevance to developing future modes of cooperation. Among the factors to emphasize in identifying effective approaches is that they maximize the use of available resources, minimize duplication of effort, and make optimum use of the broad and ever-increasing base of scientific and technical talent that exists internationally. 1 International cooperation and coordination on both a bilateral and multilateral basis have played a significant role in civil space activities since the beginning of the space age. Generally speaking, cooperation involves two or more countries working together, each contributing to the execution of a single mission. Coordination involves two or more countries that keep each other apprised of their activities in order to minimize duplication of effort and to obtain the maximum return through complementary activities. 6