Space Policy

We analyse UK and international space policy, the military aspects of space power and what the future of space conflict will look like.




J Marshall - Tribaleye Images / Alamy Stock Photo | International Space Station and space shuttle


Over the past decades we have seen a transformation in space, with the involvement of a new and diverse set of actors. Whereas previously the domain was the reserve of states with large budgets, space is increasingly populated by the private sector. The conduct of everyday life increasingly depends on space, and there has been a growth in military reliance on space assets, with satellites themselves becoming targets.

Understanding the impact this threat has on defence and space policy – both in the UK and internationally – and how militaries are responding is essential for assessing the intentions of states and for imagining what conflict in space would entail.

Our research areas cover UK, allied and adversarial space policy; space warfare; counterspace capabilities; space domain awareness; and space in disarmament and arms control. This includes questions such as: how is space already influencing conflicts here on Earth, and how will it continue to shape war in the future? Where does space fit into the defence architecture? How can national policy make the most of the domain, and how can international governance ensure that space continues to be open to everyone?

RUSI’s space programme leverages the wider experience of RUSI staff and Associate Fellows, while fostering a growing network of experts from diverse professional backgrounds.

J Marshall - Tribaleye Images / Alamy Stock Photo | International Space Station and space shuttle

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