The European Space Agency (ESA) and the Austrian Space Agency (ASA), on behalf
of the Ministry of Transport, Innovation and Technology (BMVIT) of the Federal
Republic of Austria, today founded the European Space Policy Institute (ESPI) in

The Institute, whose creation was recommended to the ESA Director General in
1999, is to become the focal point for promoting European space policy in the
world. It will identify and develop research themes relevant to European space
policy, which will be used to initiate, support and promote political and
societal debate to raise the public awareness of the importance of space-based
infrastructures and services.

The European Space Policy Institute will create a virtual network of think tanks
that will federate their know-how and skills in order to conduct comprehensive
space policy research. The tasks of the Institute are multidisciplinary,
building up know-how and knowledge to provide comprehensive and independent
policy research to space players in Europe.

The ceremony at which the ESPI Statutes were signed was held in the presence of
the Vice Chancellor and Federal Minister for Transport, Innovation and
Technology of the Republic of Austria, Hubert Gorbach, the ESA Director of
Strategy and External Relations, Jean-Pol Poncelet, and the Managing Director of
ASA, Klaus Pseiner.

The ESPI will be located in Vienna and legally represented by a Secretary
General. Any national space administration, intergovernmental research
organisation, university, institute or other national or international,
governmental or non-governmental entity or any other natural or legal person
with a particular interest in taking part in ESPI activities may become a member
of the Institute.

The host country Austria, a truly European and international location for the
ESPI (amongst other international organisations, the United Nations Office for
Outer Space Affairs is in Vienna), will thus play a significant role in
enhancing space policy issues. Austria and its scientific and industrial space
players have always been reliable partners of the European Space Agency,
contributing high-tech space technology to various European space programmes.

For further information, please contact:

Andrea Vena
ESA, Directorate of Strategy and External Relations
Tel: + 33(0)
Fax: +33(0)

Michel A. Jakob
ESPI Contact Point
Austrian Space Agency
Tel. + 43(0)1.403.81. 7726
Fax. + 43(0)1.405. 8228

Related links

* Austrian Space Agency