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Interview of Giorgio Saccoccia, President, Italian Space Agency (ASI)


Season 1, episode 44
6 min / Published

Sustainable development is essential for human beings. There can be no future without development that takes care of our planet and human rights. Space activities and Space instruments offered by Earth observation satellites and exploration technologies are very effective instruments for supporting sustainable development.

At the core of its vision, the Italian Space Agency that coordinates Space activities in Italy supports sustainable development for our Planet in the future. Space activities and services have a very important impact on our ability to reach the objectives of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. Services offered by Earth observation for example have an immediate impact on the monitoring of climate change, pollution, disaster management, emergency interventions, water quality, etc. The idea is that the return offered by space activities, also at the level of their social and economic impact, is extremely high and can make a considerable contribution to accelerating the achievement of the UN goals.

One of the major challenges that we face nowadays in the Space field, in particular as an agency, is the change of paradigm that we are experiencing. Before Space was a just domain for governments and public institutions planning big exploration or science projects, like the International Space Station. What we see now is huge interest from the private sector because Space also represents an incredible commercial opportunity. Reconciling public and private interests and priorities is the big challenge of today. This new situation will offer a great opportunity to us so that Space activities and Space services can become one of the best support instruments for a sustainable future.

Today Space activities require skills which go beyond the purely scientific domain. Today, development in Space requires skills ranging from engineering, science, and physics, to non-technical skills such as law. I personally believe this prospect for skill diversity is very attractive for the future of Space activities and I think it is this that makes Space attractive for younger generations.

If there is one message I would like to give young visitors to our exhibition, it is that they should look at Space activities as something that will become an increasing part of everyday life, the life that they are living and experiencing. I hope that young generations will approach this exhibition with an open mind that will inspire them to decide to become a part of future Space activities. And in this way eventually support the development of a better future for themselves.

When we discussed how the Italian Space Agency could contribute to this exhibition, we decided to concentrate on Art and Beauty, related to which is the protection and preservation of our invaluable cultural heritage, not only Italian heritage, but the world’s cultural heritage. Based on services provided by Space activities, we wanted to talk about Earth observation which is one of the most important and immediate returns that Space gives to our planet. All of these objectives find some synergy with the idea of peace, which is of course the ultimate goal to which you could strive working in the Space field.

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This episode is part of the SPACE FOR OUR PLANET series
Space solutions for a sustainable world
A podcast by Space4ourplanet
Space solutions for a sustainable world
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