Development of national space governance and policy trends in member states of the European Space Agency

Daniel Sagath, Christopher Vasko, Elco van Burg*, Christina Giannopapa

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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The European Space Agency (ESA) has been the main programmatic and industrial capacities development organisation of the European space sector since its establishment in the early 1970s. Understanding the national policies of its member states is crucial for the future development of a coherent European space policy. Over the last years, ESA has developed a methodology to track the development of national space policies of its member states and collaborating states. The “Member States Observatory” is a basic resource for understanding the complexity of the European national space strategies available to the national delegates, ESA experts and employees. The main objective of this study is to present the findings and methodology of two surveys performed in 2013 and 2017, in order to identify the main space strategy developments of the ESA member states. The study suggests two main dimensions, which serve to identify trends in ESA member states. These are space governance structure and public policy priorities in technology domains, areas of sustainability, and motivations for engaging in space activities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-53
Number of pages11
JournalActa astronautica
Early online date21 Aug 2019
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2019


  • European Space Agency
  • member states
  • motivations for space
  • space governance
  • strategic priorities


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