Numerous countries and regions now have very active space programs, and the number is increasing. These maturing capabilities around the world create a plethora of potential partners for cooperative space endeavors, while at the same time heightening competitiveness in the international space arena. This book summarizes a public workshop held in November 2008 for the purpose of reviewing past and present cooperation, coordination, and competition mechanisms for space and Earth science research and space exploration; identifying significant lessons learned; and discussing how those lessons could best be applied in the future, particularly in the areas of cooperation and collaboration. Presentations and initial discussion focused on past and present experiences in international cooperation and competition to identify "lessons learned." Those lessons learned were then used as the starting point for subsequent discussions on the most effective ways for structuring future cooperation or coordination in space and Earth science research and space exploration.
The goal of the workshop was not to develop a specific model for future cooperation or coordination, but rather to explore the advantages and disadvantages of various approaches and stimulate further deliberation on this important topic.