Outer Space Security Conference Series at the United Nations in Geneva
In 2002, The Simons Foundation and Project Ploughshares, in partnership with Canada's Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (now Global Affairs Canada), initiated what has become the Outer Space Security Conference Series organized by the United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR) at the Palais des Nations in Geneva. The Simons Foundation continues to partner with UNIDIR and sponsor the Outer Space Security Conferences which are held to inform the UN Conference on Disarmament on the issue of space security, the peaceful uses of outer space and the prevention of an arms race in outer space.
The report of the 2017 conference is now available at the link below:
Space Security 2017—Celebrating the Outer Space Treaty: 50 Years of Space Governance and Stability
April 20-21, 2017
The year 2017 marks the fiftieth anniversary of the entry into force of the Outer Space Treaty. Since then, space activities have increased both in number and importance. While continuing to support military operations, space systems have become an indispensable tool for an expanding range of activities, and an invaluable source of socio-economic benefits for billions of people on Earth. However, the strategic value of outer space is threatened as space systems are subject to numerous threats and hazards, ranging from anti-satellite weapons and cyber attacks, to space debris and signal jamming. Irresponsible behaviour in space operations also contributes to undermining confidence and trust among space actors. The international community has been engaged in multiple activities to enhance international stability and ensure that space operations can be safe, secure and sustainable over the long term. These include multilateral initiatives, primarily within the United Nations, to promote and build multilateral consensus on norms of behaviour. Nonetheless, progress has been intermittent and further work is required.
UNIDIR's 2017 Space Security Conference reviewed the main multilateral international initiatives to safeguard access to, and use of, outer space and assess the adequacy of the outer space regime in an evolving space environment, where new threats to space systems and developments in space activities are believed to be potentially destabilizing. The Conference, organized at a time when situational awareness, preparedness, resilience and strategic autonomy have become critical factors for all our public policies, represents a much-needed complement to shaping more incisive security policies.
Researcher: Massimo Pellegrino.
Partners: Secure World Foundation and The Simons Foundation.
Support from UNIDIR's core funders provides the foundation for all of the Institute's activities. In addition, dedicated project funding was received from the Government of the Russian Federation, Secure World Foundation and The Simons Foundation.
More information and reports on the previous Outer Space Security Conferences at the United Nations in Geneva are available from The Simons Foundation and from UNIDIR at the links below.
Security in Space: The Next Generation
Outer Space and Global Security