About the GSP
The General Studies Programme (GSP) has existed since the foundation of ESA to plan for the short to medium term. GSP interacts in different ways with all of the ESA programmes, but its main role is to lay the groundwork for the Agency’s future activities.
The objectives of the General Studies Programme are to:
- Contribute to the formulation of the overall ESA strategy;
- Study feasibility for selection of new mission concepts;
- Prepare/demonstrate the case for approval and funding of new optional projects/programmes;
- Support the evolution of ESA by analysing and testing new working methodologies.
Diverse topics are investigated, running across the entire spectrum of the agency’s activities.
The GSP is organised around three domains:
- Mission assessment studies: The programme performs mission feasibility studies, , which provide ESA member states and scientific community with the necessary information for the selection of new mission concepts and the approval and funding of new optional programmes. The GSP also performs ESA internal mission concept assessments via the Concurrent Design Facility (CDF).
- Interdisciplinary activities: The GSP facilitates inter-directorate work e.g. through the internal biannual Call for study Ideas and the 30 to 50 new activities resulting from it in each cycle. Each proposal for new studies must involve representatives from at least three different directorates. The topics investigated run across the entire spectrum of the Agency’s activities, with the result that ESA staff act as the main "discoverers" and "filters" of new ideas in the European space sector. Each study usually lasts one to two years, sufficient time for in-depth exploration of each subject.
- Strategy studies: Actions within the General Studies Programme also contribute to the formulation of the overall ESA strategy. GSP supports the evolution of ESA by analysing trends and identifying potential issues, and by testing new working methodologies – laying the groundwork for the Agency’s future activities.
GSP actively seeks the views and suggestions of industry, which are gathered through workshops, visits and interviews.
For further information please contact:
General Studies Programme
Future Preparation and Strategic Studies Office (TEC-SF)
ESA's Directorate of Technical and Quality Management
Tel. +33 1 5369 7109
E-mail: ian.carnelli @ esa.int
Last update: 21 October 2015