This is one of the most serious crises facing the space sector, particularly in the West, and it will determine the future balance of powers. Already listed as one of the “reality shocks” in last year’s special GEAB (July 2022), the issue of human resources is now crucial in the general ecosystem, where we will have to face the inevitability of a battle that has already been lost. The role of the space agencies will become diffuse rather than dominant, as they will no longer be able to guarantee control of space themselves.
Ultra-domination of the private sector
The public players in the space sector have just lost a major battle on the field of fascination. SpaceX, personified by the eccentric Elon Musk, has rapidly become more attractive than NASA thanks to the power of social networks and the scientific populism of the media, which rely on the mythification of space to make a profit without the need to add culture. Everything was based on the power of images, including that of a cherry red Tesla Roadster put into orbit by the Falcon Heavy in 2018. A knockout victory for SpaceX communications over all the world’s space agencies, even in China, without even having to explain “what it’s for”. The brand itself is used to raise funds, while the agencies have to fight political forces that remain in the dark.
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Fabienne Goux-Baudiment has a degree in political science and a doctorate in social sciences. She is the managing director of SAS, a study, research and consultancy centre in the field [...]
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