The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and the International Astronautical Federation (IAF) are jointly co-organizing a Workshop on the theme "Space for Human and Environmental Security" to promote the use of space technology for benefits of the developing countries. The Workshop will be held in conjunction with and as associated event of the 62nd International Astronautical Congress (IAC), which will take place from 3 to 7 October 2011 in Cape Town, South Africa. Workshop participants selected by the UN and IAF will be also invited to attend the IAC.
The Workshop is being organized with participation of ESA, International Academy of Astronautics (IAA) and Committee on Space Research (COSPAR), and it is cosponsored by the Secure World Foundation (SWF).
This Workshop is the 21st in the series of meetings jointly organised by the Office for Outer Space Affairs, under the United Nations Programme on Space Applications, and by the International Astronautical Federation. It builds on the recommendations and experience gained from previous workshops. The UN/IAF Workshop has been endorsed by the United Nations General Assembly as part of the 2011 activities of the United Nations Programme on Space Applications.
The UN/IAF Workshop and the 62nd IAC provide a unique forum for discussions among space experts, policy and decision makers, representatives from academic community and private industry. Participants are encouraged to share their experiences and to examine opportunities for better cooperation. In the past, contacts established among participants have resulted in a number of initiatives and activities strengthening the role of space technology applications for improving the quality of life in developing countries.
The proceedings of the Workshop will be published online by the Office for Outer Space Affairs to increase the awareness of the capabilities and benefits of space technology applications. The report of the Workshop, including findings and recommendations formulated by the participants, will be presented to the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space.
At the Third United Nations Conference on the Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (UNISPACE III), held from 19 to 30 July 1999 in Vienna, Austria, a fundamental requirement was agreed to assist States, especially developing countries, in applying the results of space research with a view to promoting the sustainable development of all people. The resolution entitled "Space Millennium: Vienna Declaration for Space and Human Development" adopted by UNISPACE III, contains a strategy for enhancing the use of space science and technology to contribute to the solutions of major global issues, including human and environmental security.
Space-based systems deliver information and services that protect lives and the environment, enhance security and stimulate industrial and economic development. Data from existing Earth observation satellite systems, in combination with data gathered in the field are essential for carrying out comprehensive studies on food security and vulnerability. Advances in satellite remote sensing, global navigation satellite systems and geographic information systems now make it easier to integrate ecological, environmental and other information for developing predictive models that can be used in the surveillance and control of diseases such as malaria and dengue fever. Satellite communications technologies can help to bring medical experts into contact with patients and health practitioners in remote and rural areas and in disaster situations. Earth observation from space, complimented with other applications, is a cost-effective method for effective monitoring of environment and management of land, ocean and fresh water resources, and providing essential data to decision-makers. Once converted into practical information, these data could be used to formulate policy and implement programmes at the national, regional and international levels.
However, while the benefits of space science and technology and its applications for developing countries are generally recognised, experience has shown that successful implementation and operational use of this technology is subject to the resolution of some major issues, including the continuous development of human resources at all levels, training of end-users, development of appropriate infrastructure and policy regulations, allocation of necessary budgetary resources.
The Workshop will address these issues and will discuss space technologies, applications, information and services that contribute into sustainable economic and social development programmes supporting human and environmental security, primarily in developing countries, with the following main objectives:
The Workshop will be composed of a series of technical presentations with sufficient time set aside for discussions. Technical sessions will be followed by open discussions, which will focus on specific topics of interest and will provide additional opportunities for participants to voice their opinions.
The programme of the Workshop will include 4 technical sessions addressing the following themes:
Space and Climate Change
Session 2: Space for Food and Water
Session 3: Space for Health
Session 4: Space for Environment
Presentations at the above technical sessions may include, but are not limited to, the following topics:
Co-organizers of the event also plan to continue a practice of holding a concluding round table discussion with participation of heads/top managers of space agencies and other relevant national/regional/international institutions and organizations from both space faring and non-space faring countries in order to establish a direct dialogue with the Workshop participants on how space technologies and policies can contribute into enhancing human and environmental security in developing countries. The round table will also discuss issues and problems in participants' countries as well as will open an exchange of pragmatic ideas between decision-makers and leaders from the above-mentioned organizations and participants of the Workshop.
Prior to the round table discussion, two or three Working Groups will be established in order to summarize critical issues/focal themes identified in the presentations delivered at the technical sessions of the Workshop for addressing those to the panelists.
Participants of the Workshop are encouraged to make presentations on the topics suggested above, as well as to participate actively in all discussions of the meeting and its Working Groups.
The latest version of the programme will be made available on the web site of the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs.
Applicants must have a university degree and well-established professional working experience in a field related to the theme of the Workshop. Applicants should be working in relevant government organizations, international or national agencies, non-governmental organizations, research or academic institutions or industry.
Special consideration will be given to the applicants:
Equally qualified female applicants are particularly encouraged.
The co-sponsors of the Workshop will jointly select participants on a competitive basis. Selected participants will be notified by 1 July 2011.
The Workshop will be held from 30 September to 2 October 2011 as part of the 62 nd International Astronautical Congress (IAC). Participants who are selected and funded by the co-sponsors will be able also to attend the IAC, which will take place from 3 to 7 October 2011, also in Cape Town, South Africa.
All selected participants will receive an information package with details on boarding, lodging and other local arrangements.
Applicants must have a good ability of English, which will be the only working language of the Workshop.
Selected participants who are funded by the cosponsors of the Workshop will be required to prepare a presentation of approximately 10 to 20 minutes on topics relevant to the Workshop objectives and the programme. Presentations on actual on-going projects will be of particular interest to organizers of the Workshop.
Within the limited financial resources available to the co-sponsors, a number of selected participants from developing countries will be offered financial support to attend the Workshop and IAC. Funded participants will be provided with round trip air tickets between the international airport of their home countries and the international airport at Cape Town, South Africa. The funded participants will also be provided with daily subsistence allowance to cover board and lodging for the duration of the Workshop and IAC. Any en-route expenses or any changes made to the tickets will be at the participant's own expense.
Due to limited availability of financial support, not all participants can be funded. In this respect, applicants and their nominating organizations are strongly encouraged to find additional sources of sponsorship to allow them to attend the Workshop.
Funded participants will receive detailed information upon notification of their selection.
The completed application form, properly endorsed by the applicant's government/institution, should be received by the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs no later than 15 May 2011 . Applications received after the deadline will be considered, but applicants will not be eligible for financial support.
We strongly encourage all candidates to apply for the Workshop online, as it helps us to streamline the processing of applications. The online application forms can be accessed through the Internet links on this page.
Alternatively, candidates may download a copy of application form from this website, complete it and submit it by mail to:
Office for Outer Space Affairs
United Nations Office at Vienna
Vienna International Centre
P.O. BOX 500
A‑1400 Vienna, AUSTRIA
Fax: (+43‑1) 26060‑5830
In that case, an advanced copy of completed application form should be e-mailed or faxed directly to the Office for Outer Space Affairs . The applicant may also submit the original of his/her application through the Office of the Resident Representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in the applicant's respective country.
Only complete applications, with all the requested information and signatures, will be considered for financial support .
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 accidental events.
UN-OOSA :Mr. Sergei Chernikov
United Nations Programme on Space Applications
Office for Outer Space Affairs
United Nations Office at Vienna
Phone: +43 1 26060 4948
Fax: +43 1 26060 5830
IAF :Mr. Philippe Willekens
94 bis, Avenue de Suffren, Paris, France
Phone: +33 1 4567 4260
Fax: +33 1 4273 2120