Three selected winners of the Space4Youth competition, launched earlier this year by the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) in collaboration with the Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC), will participate in the 27th Workshop on Space Technology for Socio-Economic Benefits, organized by the International Astronautical Federation (IAF) and UNOOSA, from 18-20 October, and will attend the 70th International Astronautical Congress (IAC) from 21-25 October, in Washington D.C. 

The three winners, Arthur Nielsen Demain from the Philippines, Milica Milosev from Serbia and Georgios Profitiliotis from Greece, will serve as rapporteurs at IAF sessions and will participate in a special event on Space4Youth during the IAC.  At the event, they will pitch their winning ideas on how to leverage space for advancing sustainable development to a panel of global space leaders who will act as mentors and support them in taking their projects to the next level. This panel will include professionals from the German Aerospace Agency, the European Space Agency and French astronaut Jean-Francois Clervoy.

After the IAC, the winners will visit space-related sites in Washington D.C and meet with United States State Department officials.  The participation of the three winners at the IAF and IAC, and the subsequent visit, were made possible through the generous support of the US Mission to International Organizations in Vienna and the US Department of State. 

The Space4Youth competition, launched in April 2019, asked youth all over the world to provide examples of how space can support the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in their community and ideas on how to further leverage its potential. Young people from over 40 countries participated in the competition. The three winning entries have already been presented at a side event on Space4Youth during the main session of the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS) in June 2019. 

The competition supports the UN Secretary-General Youth 2030 Strategy, specifically its first priority: “Engagement, participation and advocacy to amplify youth voices for the promotion of a peaceful, just and sustainable world.” 

Simonetta Di Pippo, Director of UNOOSA, said: “As the UN’s gateway to space, UNOOSA enables young people’s contributions as agents of change in international cooperation in outer space. We are proud to witness the results of the first edition of this competition, which allowed these young and talented people to bring their ideas and contribution to two of the most high-level events in the space sector worldwide.”

“The United States believes that the peaceful exploration and use of outer space benefits all countries,” said US Ambassador at the US Mission to International Organizations in Vienna Jackie Wolcott.  “We are happy to partner with UNOOSA on yet another excellent initiative that facilitates youth engagement on the peaceful uses of outer space and showcases US leadership in discovery and space exploration.”