7 March 2008. Experts from seven European countries met at ESPI in the context of the study “Isolation of space research from space industry. How to improve the relationship between the broader basic science and space industry.”
A group of 15 experts met at ESPI to brainstorm on the relationship between space industry and academia. In a joint effort they investigated the triangle of industry, governmental organisations and academia in the European context. The experts debated the importance of ties between basic space research and space industry. In the centre of the discussions was the question: Are basic research and sciences in Europe isolated from space industry and if so, what are the reasons for that?
The experts, representing seven different European countries and providing different professional backgrounds, discussed about the opportunities to learn from international benchmarks and the potential benefits arising from a close cooperation of space research and space industry. They agreed that an effective strategy would have to be elaborated to guarantee the competitiveness of Europe in the international context.
The overall consensus of the discussion was that there was no explicit isolation between academia and industry, but a change in the overall relation. As reasons for the change the participants stated the growth in scale and scope of space projects including higher risks having the effect of being exclusionary. A hot topic was the applicability of U.S. practices for the European context. Most participants agreed that the reasons for US choices are not automatically valid for Europe.
Project leader Rolf Skaar and his assisting research intern Katharina Stoffl highly appreciated the input provided by the experts. The results from this workshop will determine the recommendations in the ESPI report which is planned to be ready for publication in mid 2008.
From left to right: Dag Kavlie, Joran Idar Moen, Katharina Stoffl, Rob Scott, Rolf Skaar, Manfred Steller, Mike Cruise, Irena Bido, Jörg Wehner, Radboud Koop, Gerhard Haerendel.