Newcomer in Boulder

This is my first post on my EU Fellowship at University of Colorado, Boulder. Like all EU fellows, I have a subject of special study during my fellowship: space commercialisation and privatisation.

My intention is to use this blog to give personal impressions on my stay in Boulder and report briefly but regularly on activities linked to my fellowship, focusing on the subject of my study.

I think the right way to start is to thank the European Commission and the University of Colorado, particularly Dr Max Boykoff and all the staff at the Centre for Science and Technology Policy Research, and Dr Joseph Jupille.

I arrived in Boulder on August 8th, a week in advance of the formal start of the fellowship. Settling in presented no problem; all the University staff I have been in contact with are very friendly and efficient.

On Augusto 10th, I had my first meeting related to the subject I am here to explore. I visited Dr Michael K. Simpson, Executive Director of Secure World Foundation (http://swfound.org/about-us/our-team/dr-michael-k-simpson/). Dr Simpson shared with me some interesting views on space commerce. He pointed out that the issue of space commerce is a hot topic and SWF is involved in several international fora dealing with it. We covered a wide range of issues. I noted in particular his comment on the influence of State politics in the development of space activities, both public and private alike, and on the fact that, because of that influence, space in the US is rather “decentralised”, much in the same way that space is “decentralised” in the EU (where space remains largely a matter of national competence). Decentralisation, he pointed out, isn´t necessarily a disadvantage as it often induces new approaches and original ideas. Finding the right niche is often the key to success in commercial space.

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