Thomas Hoerber, Director of ESSCA’s EU*Asia Institute and space policy expert, recently participated in the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Space for Arctic Workshop, which took place in Tromsø, Norway, on 2 and 3 July. Organised in collaboration with Eurisy, the Norwegian Space Agency (NOSA) and the Norwegian Polar Institute (NPI), this important event fell within the framework of ESA Accelerators and ESA’s Civil Security from Space Programme.

The two-day workshop, led by Pascal Legai of the Director General’s Cabinet, brought together a range of space and Arctic experts, industry representatives, user communities and researchers. The focus was on exploring the potential of space technologies for the Arctic, addressing critical climate change impacts, and identifying needs to support the development of new programmes and capabilities.

The workshop focused on three thematic panels, each addressing a specific challenge facing the Arctic:

1. Sustainable economic development: This panel explored how space technologies can support sustainable growth in the Arctic region.
2. Security: Discussions focused on enhancing security through improved surveillance and communication systems.
3. Climate and environmental challenges: This panel addressed the pressing issues of climate change and environmental protection in the Arctic.

Thomas Hoerber shared his expertise in a round table moderated by Bruno Reynaud de Sousa. Alongside other experts such as Laurent Jaffart, Rolf Skatteboe, Morten Høglund and Aleksandra Bukała, he engaged in an enriching dialogue that provided a deeper understanding of the policy needs and strategic directions for the Arctic region.

Professor Hoerber’s participation in the Space for Arctic workshop underlines his commitment to using space policy to address global challenges. His contributions not only highlighted the critical intersection of space technologies and Arctic sustainability, but also underscored the importance of collaborative efforts to address the impacts of climate change.

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