United Nations / Jordan Workshop: Global Partnership in Space Exploration and Innovation

Amman, Jordan 25-28 March 2019

Support provided by: Arab Union for Astronomy and Space Sciences, Inter Islamic Network on Space Sciences and Technology & Royal Jordanian Geographic Centre

Key Information and Documents

Introduction

The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) is the United Nations Office responsible for promoting international cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space. In line with efforts to build capacity in space science and technology, which is a major area of focus for UNOOSA, between 1995 and 2014 UNOOSA established seven regional centres for space science and technology education, affiliated to the United Nations.

The Regional Center for Space Science and Technology Education for Western Asia inaugurated in Amman, Jordan in 2012, is the regional centre serving Arab speaking students, researchers and scientists. The mission of the Regional Centre is to assist participating countries in developing and enhancing the knowledge and skills of their citizens in relevant aspects of space science and technology in order that such individuals can effectively contribute to national development and space programmes.

During the UN/Jordan Workshop, the above entities will bring together local, regional and global scientists, engineers, educators, policy-and-decision makers and experts to discuss and develop thinking on global partnership in space exploration and innovation. The Workshop will include both strategic and capacity-building components and will aim to leverage and build upon the efforts of entities already collaborating on space exploration and innovation.

Background & Recent Related United Nations Intergovernmental Efforts

Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space

The Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space is the intergovernmental body established by the United Nations General Assembly to address international cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space. The Committee, substantively serviced by UNOOSA, is comprised of both emerging space nations and established space powers. The Committee's growing membership, and the impressive number of space-related intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations actively supporting its work, reflect the increasing importance that space science and technology play in the daily lives of people around the world.

During its fifty-ninth session in 2016, the Committee endorsed seven thematic priorities leading to the fiftieth anniversary of the first United Nations Conference on the Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (UNISPACE+50). Thematic Priority 1, Global partnership in space exploration and innovation, had the objectives of:

  • Raising awareness of space exploration and innovation as essential drivers for opening up new domains in space science and technology, triggering new partnerships and developing capabilities that create new opportunities for addressing global challenges;
  • Fostering dialogue with the space industry and the private sector;
  • Promoting cooperation between spacefaring nations and emerging space nations;
  • Allowing space exploration activities to become open and inclusive on a global scale; and
  • Identifying governance and cooperation mechanisms to support this objective ( A/71/20, paragraph 296).

Action Team on Exploration and Innovation

Also in 2016, the Committee called upon States to put forward nominations to lead and co-lead a new action team, to be established under thematic priority 1. Austria, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Luxembourg, Pakistan, Poland, Qatar, Romania, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Switzerland, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, United States of America, Committee on Space Research, European Organisation for Astronomical Research in the Southern Hemisphere, European Science Foundation, European Space Agency, Inter-Islamic Network on Space Sciences and Technology, International Law Association, National Space Society and United Nations Environment Programme became members of the Action Team on Exploration and Innovation, with Jordan, China and the United States acting as Co-Chairs.

The Action Team's final terms of reference, made available to the Committee in 2017 in conference room paper A/AC.105/2017/CRP.21, captured fields of study and methods of work.

During its meetings in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, in November 2017, held in connection with the United Nations/United Arab Emirates High Level Forum on Space as a Driver for Socioeconomic Sustainable Development, the Action Team on Exploration and Innovation reached consensus on a report, including seven recommendations.

The report on thematic priority 1 was before delegations in early 2018 at the fifty-fifth session of the Committee's subsidiary body, the Scientific and Technical Subcommittee ( A/AC.105/C.1/114). At the request of the Action Team on Exploration and Innovation, an updated version of the report was prepared for the sixty-first session of the Committee ( A/AC.105/1168) in June 2018. At that session, the Committee considered this report and its recommendations and agreed on the inclusion of a new regular agenda item, entitled "Space exploration and innovation" in its agenda ( A/73/20, para 364).

Workshop Objectives and Expected Outcomes

This present UN/Jordan workshop was envisioned in the Action Team's terms of reference. It will have both strategic and capacity-building elements and will be informed by, and aim to produce observations and recommendations that will link with, various Sustainable Development Goals, including SDG4: Quality education; SDG5: Gender equality; SDG9: Industry, innovation and infrastructure; and SDG17: Partnerships for the goals, as well as with the "Space2030" agenda currently under development.

The main objectives of this workshop are:

  1. To build upon the work of the Action Team on Exploration and Innovation;
  2. To build capacity in space exploration and innovation, with emphasis on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), as per the recommendation of the Action Team on Exploration and Innovation, ( A/AC.105/1168, para. 114);
  3. To promote greater exchange of actual experiences in global partnership for space exploration and innovation;
  4. To work towards allowing space exploration activities to become open and inclusive on a global scale; and
  5. To provide the Regional Center for Space Science and Technology Education for Western Asia an opportunity to showcase and promote its work.

Programme

The Workshop programme will include plenary sessions and sufficient time for discussions among participants.

Thematic sessions will be devoted to:

  1. Current space exploration and innovation programs of States/space agencies;
  2. Current space exploration and innovation cooperation mechanisms and potential future ones;
  3. Developing open and inclusive global space exploration partnerships, demonstrating diversity in geographic representation, gender, specialization, age, seniority etc…;
  4. Terrestrial analogues (linked to the visit to Wadi Rum*); and
  5. Planetary protection.

*A one-day side visit to Wadi Rum will be arranged by the Local Organizing Committee as part of the Workshop programme. (Further details are to come.)

Workshop participants will also be able to visit an exhibition, to be organized by the Local Organizing Committee in conjunction with the Workshop. (Please contact Nivin Hasan ( nivin1000[@]yahoo.com) and Ibrahim Baddawi ( albaddawii[@]yahoo.com), Deputy Directors General, Regional Center for Space Science and Technology Education for Western Asia for more information.)

Please check this website regularly for updated information.

Registration *

Participation is limited and all applicants based outside Jordan are required to register online. (Participants seeking funding must apply before 1 January 2019- End of Day CET. Self funded participants must apply before 20 January 2019- End of Day CET.)  All applicants need to submit an abstract of their proposed contribution to the Workshop (scientific paper, poster, display or presentation) as well as a completed signature page.

*The online application form is now available. Please note there is a two step registration process. Please fill and submit the form online. An e-mail will then be sent to you, prompting you to send your abstract and signature page. Please use the same subject line in your reply e-mail as found in the e-mail sent to you. 

Successful applicants will receive an official invitation letter, including additional practical information.

Qualified persons based in Jordan are particularly encouraged to participate in the Workshop and should contact the Jordanian Focal Points so that their participation may be considered by the Local Organizing Committee.

Working Language

The working language of the Workshop will be English. All participants are required to have good English language skills.

Posters, scientific papers and displays

Participants of the Workshop are requested to contribute a scientific paper, poster, presentation and/or display related to the themes. It is necessary for applicants to submit an abstract of a maximum of 600 words including the following details about their proposed contribution: Title, Short Description, Author Name(s), Affiliation(s), and e-mail address for the presenter. Applicants are requested to use the provided templates when submitting online applications.

Presentations will be published on the website of the Office for Outer Space Affairs.

Sponsorship

The Office for Outer Space Affairs of the United Nations and Jordan/Regional Center for Space Science and Technology Education for Western Asia are responsible for organizing and sponsoring the Workshop. Support is being provided by the Royal Jordanian Geographic Centre and the Arab Union for Astronomy and Space Sciences.

Sponsorship of the Workshop is still open to other interested entities. If interested, please reach out to the contact persons listed below.

Expected Participants

The Workshop is being planned for approximately 80 participants including scientists, engineers, university educators, policy-and-decision makers, and senior experts from the following groups: international, regional, national and local institutions, United Nations agencies, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, research and development institutions, and industry.

Participation requirements

Participants should have decision-making responsibilities within governmental agencies, national or regional institutions, intergovernmental or non-governmental organizations or industry. Applications from equally qualified women are particularly encouraged.

Financial support

Within the limited financial resources available, a limited number of selected participants will be offered financial support to attend the Workshop. This financial support will defray the cost of travel (a round trip air ticket - most economic fare - between the airport of international departure in their home country and Amman, Jordan) and/or room and board expenses for the duration of the Workshop. The co-sponsors of the Workshop will jointly select participants on a competitive basis.

The online application form includes a section on financial support and is available at the following address .

Application Deadlines

Applicants based outside Jordan should apply to participate online. The completed application form, together with an abstract of the contribution to be presented at the Workshop, should be submitted via the online registration system to the Office for Outer Space Affairs, no later than 1 January 2019 for participants seeking sponsorship and 20 January 2019 for self-funded participants. Only complete applications with all the requested information and signatures will be considered.

The online application form is now available.

Qualified persons based in Jordan are particularly encouraged to participate in the Workshop and should contact the Jordanian Focal Points so their participation may be considered by the Local Organizing Committee.

Life and Health Insurance

Life/major health insurance for each of the selected participants is necessary and is the responsibility of the candidate or his/her institution or Government. The co-sponsors will not assume any responsibility for life and major health insurance, nor for expenses related to medical treatment or accidents. Please pay attention to the signature page when registering for the Workshop.

Contact Information

For additional information on the Workshop programme, attendance for people based outside Jordan and potential funding, please contact: Tanya Keusen, United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs ( keusen[@]un.org).

The focal points for Jordan are: Nivin Hasan ( nivin1000[@]yahoo.com) and Ibrahim Baddawi ( albaddawii[@]yahoo.com) Deputy Directors General, Regional Center for Space Science and Technology Education for Western Asia. Please contact the Jordanian Focal Points for details on the exhibition and for other substantive and administrative local matters.

 

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