15 March 2010. The Belgian High Representation for Space Policy and the Spanish Centro para el Desarollo Teconológico Industrial joined ESPI as new member institutions.
ESPI comprises two new member institutions: the space administrations of Belgium (the Belgian High Representation for Space Policy, BHRS) and Spain (the Centro para el Desarollo Teconológico Industrial, CDTI), the two European countries with steadily growing ambitions and investments in space, have joined the Institute.
Cooperation with Belgian institutions has already been established by ESPI. To mention are in particular the links with the Catholic University of Leuven in the framework of the European Space Policy and Academic Network (ESPRAN) organised by ESPI. With BHRS as a new member institution, ESPI intends to support the upcoming Belgian EU Council Presidency in particular with the project it jointly conducts with Eurisy, dealing with a new cooperation strategy vis-à-vis Africa. The results of the first phase of this project shall constitute an input to the Africa conference convened by the Belgian EU Council Presidency on 16 September 2010.
A number of cooperative ventures has already been conducted with Spanish institutions, including a recent stay of a Visiting Researcher at ESPI from Jaén University and the prominent participation of Spain in the Latin America-European Roundtable, held at ESPI in February 2009. ESPI will provide its knowledge to the current Spanish EU Council Presidency in the various areas, where particular emphasis is put like in the field of space and security. It might also be noted that ESPI’s Advisory Council has, since the beginning, included an expert from Spain. The accession of these two space administrations demonstrates the attractiveness of ESPI as a think tank, which can – through its independent research – provide useful advice and support for decision-making in the policy area of space.