Commercialisation of Space: Opportunities and Challenges


Somerset House, East Wing, Somerset House, East Wing. Strand, London WC2R 2LS, United Kingdom, CA

Space commercialisation covers a breadth of space related technologies, capabilities and services, both space-based as well as ground-based, that are generally exploited to generate revenue by governments and aerospace companies. Much of the space capabilities developed so far are beginning to be exploited not only commercially as multi-national companies have expanded their business activities, but also for humanitarian applications such as alleviation of poverty and diseases and management of refugees resulting from droughts and conflicts for which space capabilities could be used by appropriate United Nations agencies. Overall space economy reached $289.77 billion in 2011 with major contribution coming from commercial activities rather than from government spending.

Potential benefits of capabilities developed in outer space for people on Earth are well established in today’s increasingly connected world. Thus, under the Dhawan Chair, which has recently been established in the Department of War Studies, King’s College (London, England) the initial focus will be on the civil uses and commercialisation of space activities.

In this context, this two-day Conference at King’s College London is organised, in collaboration with McGill University’s Institute of Air and Space Law (Montreal, Canada), with participation by several invited experts from different countries with developed space programmes and related commercial activities.

The main objectives of the Conference are to:

(a)   assess critically whether commercialization of space is benefiting all countries and peoples irrespective of their degree of economic or scientific development;

(b)   identify precisely critical challenges to commercialization of space and to propose viable solutions to address these challenges;

(c)   how to achieve a balance between commercial benefits and benefits derived from space capabilities for economic development through exploitation of Earth’s natural resources in developing countries; and

(d)   develop a model of public-private relationship by studying different cases and identifying a successful model (or its factors).

The results of the Conference will be published in a report under the Dhawan Chair.

Visit the Institute of Air & Space Law's website to download the latest version of the conference program and the background paper.

Contact Information

Bhupendra Jasani
King's London College
bhupendra.jasani [at]
Office Phone: 
44 (0)20 7848 2311
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