Such strategic challenges are an opportunity for Europe’s space activities. ESA has already demonstrated the role of space systems and applications as key enablers in monitoring climate change and protecting very precious ecosystems (the Arctic, oceans, etc.) while developing them and increasing the knowledge of humankind, notably through scientific discoveries and global endeavours undertaken through international cooperation.
As Europe’s space sector continues to demonstrate its ability to provide applications and services to tackle complex societal challenges, building on its sound experience and strengths in science, research, exploration and technology, it will be appreciated as an effective partner even beyond its traditional scope of activity.
Notably this will be in reshaping the economy through knowledge policies and promoting a society of innovation, the trend being towards growing integration of space and non-space technologies and processes in applications reaching into and supporting all aspects of daily life, in enabling individual empowerment and increased effective governance (e.g. e-governance), in dealing with all forms of inequality, in enhancing the international role of Europe (in particular, supporting economic development) and lastly in building an inclusive society, inspired and invested with identity through joint achievements in space.
ESA is the instrument to realise Europe’s ambitions in space.
The implementation of these evolving policies will contribute to attaining ESA’s declared goal to foster a globally competitive European space sector, by supporting research, innovation and entrepreneurship for growth and jobs, and seizing larger shares of global markets.
ESA’s important role in maintaining Europe’s place at the forefront of the space sector will be achieved by focusing on:
- A single European Space Strategy, able to provide the necessary solutions to answer the needs of Europe while serving the citizens of all EU and ESA Member States.
- A set of coherent and ambitious optional and mandatory programmes, including ESA’s scientific and technological activities as the backbone of ESA, representing a unique source of inspiration and positioning Europe as a leader in a number of scientific and technical areas.
- A plan for the Agency to evolve and adapt to the changes presented by Space 4.0, where strategic challenges are seen as real opportunities for Europe’s space activities.