Following is the text of a message from Secretary-General Kofi Annan on
occasion of World Space Week (4-10 October 2001):

The theme for this year’s observance of World Space Week, “Inspiration
from Space”, celebrates the many ways in which space has improved our
lives by sparking creativity in the arts and sciences.

Space is a part of the world’s cultural heritage. It has inspired
generations of artists, poets, scientists and musicians. Throughout
history, societies have admired and searched for meaning in the same night

Indeed, space exploration can help bring cultures together. Manned space
missions today are rarely top-secret national projects. Much more common
are international crews, with members from a variety of backgrounds.
Crews live together in cramped and challenging conditions for months,
sharing experiences, customs and, above all, the enthusiasm for space that
brought them together in the first place. Their missions capture the
imaginations not only of their native lands, but of people around the

Space is also helping us to address some of today’s most urgent problems.
Space technology has produced tools that are transforming weather
forecasting, environmental protection, humanitarian assistance, education,
medicine, agriculture and a wide range of other activities. And, of
course, a fascination with space leads many young people to pursue careers
in science and technology, helping developing countries in particular to
build up their human resources, improve their technological base and
enhance their prospects for development.

World Space Week is an occasion to be inspired anew by the wonders of
outer space — and to rededicate ourselves to sharing those inspirations
and discoveries with all humanity.