Enhancing outreach to a variety of interested communities and improving dissemination of SSB reports is a high priority. In 2012, the SSB continued to distribute its quarterly newsletter by electronic means to subscribers.
The Board teamed with other NRC units (including the Division on Earth and Life Studies, the BPA, the National Academies Press, the Office of News and Public Information, and the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences) to take exhibits to national meetings of the American Geophysical Union and the American Astronomical Society. More than 1,000 reports were disseminated in addition to the copies distributed to study committee members, the Board, and sponsors. A DVD compilation of SSB reports since 1958 is also included with the annual report and disseminated by mail and at exhibits and meetings.
Formal reports delivered to government sponsors constitute one of the primary products of the work of the SSB, but the dissemination process has a number of other important elements. The Board is always seeking ways to ensure that its work reaches the broadest possible appropriate audience and that it has the largest beneficial impact. Copies of reports are routinely provided to key executive branch officials, members and staffs of relevant congressional committees, and members of other interested NRC and federal advisory bodies. Members of the press are notified about the release of each new report, and the SSB maintains a substantial mailing list for distribution of reports to members of the space research community. The SSB publishes summaries of all new reports in its quarterly newsletter. The SSB also offers briefings by committee chairs and members or SSB staff to officials in Congress, the executive branch, and scientific societies. Reports are posted on the SSB Web home page at http://sites.nationalacademies.org/SSB/index.htm and linked to the National Academies Press Web site for reports at http://www.nap.edu.
The Space Studies Board has operated a very successful competitive internship program since 1992. The Lloyd V. Berkner Space Policy Internship is named after Dr. Berkner, the Board’s first chair, who played an instrumental role in creating and promoting the International Geophysical Year, a global effort that made it possible for scientists from around the world to coordinate observations of various geophysical phenomena.
The general goal of each internship is to provide a promising undergraduate student an opportunity to work in civil space research policy in the nation’s capital, under the aegis of the National Academies. Internships are offered twice a year; in the summer for undergraduates and in autumn for undergraduate and graduate students. Interns typically work with the Board, its committees, and staff on one or more of the advisory projects currently underway. Other interns, paid or unpaid, also join the SSB staff on an ad hoc basis.
For current intern opportunities at the SSB, and a list of past SSB interns, visit the SSB Web site at http://sites.nationalacademies.org/SSB/ssb_052239.