The project brings together stakeholders to discuss the implications of ‘democratising Responsible Space Exploitation space’ and to identify the opportunities, challenges and barriers to creating an environmentally, economically and socially sustainable space industry.
Dr. James Osborn, Department of Physics, email@example.com
Dr. Atanu Chaudhuri, Business School, firstname.lastname@example.org
Professor James E. Ridgway, School of Education, email@example.com
The project brings together stakeholders from “space science” (notably, the space industry, physics and engineering, supply chain management, and ‘citizens’ (via applied social science and philosophy)) to discuss the implications of ‘democratising Responsible Space Exploitation space’ and to identify the opportunities, challenges and barriers to creating an environmentally, economically and socially sustainable space industry.
Space is the new Wild West. There is intense, unregulated, activity and planning from governments and private companies that encompass inter alia star wars, moon bases, asteroid mining, telecoms, and tourism. The popular phrase ‘democratisation of space’ is best translated as ‘imperialism and capitalism raw in tooth and claw’. There is a pressing need for ‘democratisation’ – where citizens globally influence decisions about space exploitation that will affect their lives. Our long-term ambition is to create a Durham-focussed nexus designed to support ‘democratisation’.
Our ambitions for the Durham nexus are to provide:
This proposal forms the first phase of our plan. The overarching research question for this scoping project is as follows:
How can humanity explore space responsibly without falling into the trap of creating value for individual stakeholders at the expense of others?
The specific research questions are:
The development and implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) provide a model for our work, and also a target group to work with. SDGs include:
Each goal is measured via a raft of indicators; there is an international accord that all governments should work towards the SDGs, and a system of global accountability.
The direct outputs from this project will be:
Journal articles will be targeted at international and highly-regarded publications such as Science and Culture, Research Policy, Journal of Business Ethics, Journal of Operations Management and Advances in Space Research. We will also seek to publish articles in highly-distributed magazines such as The Room and The Conversation.
Our ambition is to develop the Durham Space Hub, a one-of-a kind centre, promoting interdisciplinary space research in UK and across the world. There are several Space networks in the UK with the aim of developing and testing technology, but none that actually discuss what should be - or even if - it should be done from the point of view of responsible space exploitation. We have been in contact with several of these technology networks and they are all extremely keen to partner with us and to help make this initial scoping concept a success.
Le Guin, 2009, Cheek by Jowl: Talks and Essays on How and Why fantasy Matters