EOcafe: ‘Europe in a Changing World: The geo-strategic context for Space and EO Services’

Thursday 13th of January 2022

16:00-16:45 CET

As we enter 2022, what can we expect for the EO sector and the business of space more broadly? It will surely be an important year for space actors in Europe, a year to consolidate actions and implement policies discussed in 2020 and 2021. How will these fit within the context of the rising global interest in space and what it can offer? What can European industry expect as companies look forward and define their business strategy?

Entering 2022, France assumes the Presidency of the Council of Europe with “space” as one of its priorities. In its six-month programme1, France has the objective to continue supporting the European flagship programmes Galileo and Copernicus and also focusing on developing a common EU vision for space traffic management. What new priorities might emerge from this process?

The European Space Summit, organised under the French presidency, will be an important milestone to decide on strategic orientations and develop a modernised and agile governance structure of European space. The results of this Summit shall be an essential input for the ESA Council Meeting at Ministerial Level at the end of 2022. What can industry expect?

As international competition becomes more intense, space is becoming more and more an important asset for all countries and particularly for a handful of leading ones including Europe. Led by a number of heavy-hitting US actors, the commercialisation of space becomes more prominent creating new tensions between those countries with strategic interests. How will this trend evolve?

One high profile initiative is Starlink which has the ambition to place up to 20,000 satellites into orbit. This is raising many concerns including the recent reaction from China in relation to the threat of collision with their space station. The recent anti-satellite test by the Russians added to space debris and the threat to 3rd parties’ satellites. What does this mean for security, international relations and future commercial efforts?

In the EO services sector, new players are entering the market driving innovation and offering new products and services. The sector remains highly fragmented with one or two early signs that some consolidation may take place. How can we expect this to change the European landscape?

For the first EOcafe of 2022, we shall take a look at how the geo-strategic landscape of space is changing and how this might influence the EO services sector. The European Space Policy Institute provides strategic analysis of markets, technologies and other aspects linked to space which helps shape the policies in Europe. Jean-Jacques Tortora Director of ESPI will join me for what I am sure will be a fascinating discussion about these market and geostrategic trends and how the European policy framework could be used to maintain European technology and skills at the heart of the space race.

We have more questions than answers and our host Geoff Sawyer (EARSC Strategic Advisor and former Secretary General) will discuss with Mr Jean-Jacques TORTORA (Director, European Space Policy Institute) to seek to clarify some of these strategic issues.

Questions which could be addressed during this EOcafe include the following:

• Given that the space sector is globally in transformation how could/should Europe react to adapt to the new global context?
• Security has never been at the top of European priorities in Space. Recently, some major initiatives have however been made at national levels, in particular in France. What further developments would you expect at European level?
• Space commerce is a concept that is developing worldwide and supporting business development of European companies. It is one of the key drivers of the European space strategy. But the form of commercialization takes very different forms on each side of the Atlantic (and elsewhere). How is the European space industry equipped to face the fiercer competition ahead?
• More and more EO services companies are forming leading to increasing fragmentation. How might this change in the future?

What questions do you have that are critical to shaping your company or organisations’ strategy for the next 5 years? Come and join the debate.

Registration: The webinar is open to ALL but priority will be given to EARSC members. Registration is free but compulsory. Please click on the following link to register.

Registration link

Please note this is a virtual event!

EOcafe is part of a series of EARSC meetings that offer timely, relevant, and practical information on a broad variety of topics related to the EO sector. Join us every two weeks to discuss and network while enjoying a cup of coffee with friends.


• The use of a video camera is not mandatory but encouraged to facilitate better interaction among the attendees and the guest speaker(s).
• The EOcafe will stay open after 17:00 in case our guests want to continue the discussion.
• By registering for this event, you accept the terms and conditions (https://earsc.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/EARSC_Events_GDPR.pdf).
If you have any questions, and/or you want to know more about the EOcafe, and/or you want to share an idea about a future EOcafe, please contact Delphine (Delphine.Miramont@earsc.org).

1 https://presidence-francaise.consilium.europa.eu/media/qh4cg0qq/en_programme-pfue-v1-2.pdf

Author: EARSC

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