As defined by the Secretary-General's Bulletin ST/SGB/2020/1, UNOOSA manages and implements the programme on the peaceful uses of outer space, which is aimed at strengthening international cooperation in space activities and in the use of space science and technology for achieving sustainable development.

The Office is headed by a Director and has five sections, as shown in the organisational structure.

The Director is supported by the Senior Advisor on Space Science and Education, who provides expert advice and supports research relating to the activities and programmes carried out by the Office. The Senior Advisor also works closely with the Regional Centres for Space Science and Technology Education, affiliated to the United Nations.

Ms. Aarti Holla-Maini serves as the Director of the Office since September 2023.

Office of the Director (OD)

OD oversees and coordinates the strategic direction and operational priorities of UNOOSA, including the preparation, monitoring and implementation of the workplan, budget and strategic framework. The Office of the Director also leads external relations and public information activities, including the coordination of its communications, public affairs, partnerships, and advocacy matters.

Committee, Policy and Legal Affairs Section (CPLA)

CPLA provides substantive, secretariat, organisational and administrative support to the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS), its Scientific and Technical Subcommittee (STSC) and its Legal Subcommittee (LSC), both established in 1961. COPUOS reports to the Fourth Committee of the General Assembly, which adopts an annual resolution on international cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space.

CPLA also assists UN Member States in the formulation and adoption of legal instruments and standards relating to the exploration and peaceful uses of outer space.

As UNOOSA leads UN-Space (the Inter-Agency Meeting on Outer Space Activities), CPLA convenes and services the sessions of UN-Space.

Space Applications Section (SAS)

SAS plans and implements the United Nations Programme on Space Applications to build national capability in the areas of basic sciences, basic space technology and human space technology. The Programme helps all countries leverage space data and applications to achieve the SDGs, in particular in the areas of global health, disaster management, climate change, humanitarian assistance, environmental monitoring and natural resources management.

Since its inception in 1971, the Programme has organised, among other activities, over 150 training courses, workshops and conferences, attended by more than 7,500 participants.

United Nations Platform for Space-Based Information for Disaster Management and Emergency Response (UN-SPIDER)

UN-SPIDER is a programme of UNOOSA to leverage space data and applications for disaster risk reduction. UN-SPIDER helps all countries access and use space-based information in all phases of the disaster management cycle, including prevention, preparedness, early warning, response and reconstruction.

Executive Secretariat of the International Committee on GNSS (ICG)

The ICG brings together all global navigation satellite system (GNSS) providers to improve their uses for sustainable development and their compatibility. The ICG Executive Secretariat, in partnership with members and associate members of and observers to ICG and international entities, disseminates information through the information centres hosted by the Regional Centres for Space Science and Technology Education, affiliated to the United Nations; promotes the use of GNSS as tools for scientific applications; and builds the capacity of developing countries in using GNSS technology for sustainable development.

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