2 April 2011.The present state of space law making and the longstanding lack of establishing binding provisions was the theme of a conference, held in Vienna, for which ESPI was invited to contribute.
The Austrian National Point of Contact for the European Centre for Space Law (ECSL), a close partner of ESPI during the past years, organized a conference on “‘Soft Law’ in Outer Space.
The Function of Non-binding Norms in International Space Law” at the Law Faculty of the University of Vienna. Led by Irmgard Marboe, professor for international law and leading space law expert in Austria, this conference posed the question why there has been a longstanding lack of drafting and adopting binding provisions for space activities and what effect this development has. The “soft law” which has emerged since the past twenty years was therefore in the centre of the investigation (programme download here) to which ESPI’s Director Kai-Uwe Schrogl was invited to contribute a presentation (download here) reflecting on his experience as chairman for two UNCOPUOS working group, which respectively led to the two UN General Assembly Resolutions (on the “launching State” UNGA Res. 59/115 of 10 December 2004 and on the registration practice UNGA Res. 62/101 of 17 December 2007).
ESPI has, during the past years, cooperated with the Austrian National Point of Contact for ECSL in numerous ways. Amongst this, Irmgard Marboe spoke at ESPI events and provided an article to the Yearbook on Space Policy and ESPI’s Matxalen Sánchez Aranzamendi contributed to the NPoC’s work on national space legislation. Following the latter’s move to Brussel as ESPI’s Associate Fellow there, the cooperation between ESPI and the NPoC will in the future be coordinated by ESPI’s new Resident Fellow for regulatory affairs Mildred Trögeler.
Conference chair Irmgard Marboe (second from right) with ESPI Resident Fellow Mildred Trögeler (second from left) and ESA Legal Adviser Marco Ferrazzani (right) and ESPI’s Director Kai-Uwe Schrogl