Africa is in need for effective instruments supporting its efforts to achieve sustainable development. Satellite applications can be of tremendous benefit for achieving this goal. Europe is already providing assistance to Africa in this field but the efforts – through Eumetsat, ESA, national institutions or via the UN Space Applications Programme – have so far lacked a comprehensive strategy, a coherent coordination and a thorough consultation between the European and the African stakeholders. Especially on an operational level exchanges among user communities have to be encouraged. Calibration between user needs and service provider capabilities has to be improved and service provider requirements have to be met by space infrastructure.
The two-year project “Fostering a European-African Partnership for Sustainable Development in Africa through Satellite Applications” (European-African Partnership) is a joint initiative by ESPI and Eurisy, the European think tank on space policy and the European association facilitating the use of satellite services. Numerous activities will tackle the issues of strategy, coordination, cooperation and consultation in order to create a new impetus for European-African partnership in this field. The process will involve all relevant stakeholders and address in clear and precise ways the various levels: from the policy-makers to the final users. The first phase will investigate the policy aspects, the second phase will feature user consultations and stimulate cooperation among actors on the operational level.
For more information see the project leaflet (download here). The project will be led on ESPI’s side by Resident Fellow Christina Giannopapa.
The following activities are already foreseen:
10 February 2010: European-African Roundtable (at the occasion of the UNCOPUOS Scientific-Technical Subcommittee meeting) at ESPI in Vienna
26 May 2010: Workshop on drafting policy perspectives (strategy and coordination) at ESPI in Vienna
July 2010: Presentation of the policy perspectives to the EU Council Presidency in Brussels
14-15 October 2010: Conference “Development and cooperation in the Mediterranean region using satellite services”, Rabat (Morocco), led by Eurisy
April 2011, Conference, Central Africa led by Eurisy
October 2011, Conference, during the International Astronautical Congress 2011 taking place in Cape Town (South Africa), Eurisy, ESPI, IAF