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What is SpaceJams?

SpaceJams is our weekly Policy "meeting". It is meant to be an informal get-together (with food!) for anyone in SSI that is interested in gaining a broader perspective on the space industry and learning about a particular topic or recent space news. We want this to be a welcoming and interactive space (pun intended) where anyone can jump in with questions, ideas, or insights.

The overall structure is loosely as follows:

  • Each week, a member (or a couple of members) will be Discussion Leads, bringing in a topic or article(s) of interest and any relevant historical contexts that they feel the group would benefit from.
  • The Discussion Leads share and summarize the article or topic of choice, presenting any conflicting opinions, strategies, or current difficulties that makes this a relevant and intriguing topic.
  • Discussion Leads prepare a series of questions to pose to the group for discussion and any possible proposals or areas for further research. More often than not, there won't be a simple resolution to a topic -- and that's fine! The goal here isn't to solve the problems facing the aerospace industry, but rather to gain a better understanding of what's happening. Where we can, we may try to hypothesize what possible futures may look like.

Discussion Lead Schedule (Fall 2017)

Week 3 (Sun 10/8): Rebecca

Week 4 (Sat 1014): Thomas

Week 5:

Week 6:

Week 7:

Week 8:

Week 9:

Possible Discussion Topics

Not sure where to start? Take a look at just a handful of issues present in the space world these days...

  • Back to the Moon or go to Mars?
  • US Space Corps
  • Space debris -- Who's problem is it? How to enforce rules?
  • (Asteroid) Mining and territorial ownership
  • NASA's Space Launch System (SLS)
  • Legislative oversight for national colonization of outer space bodies?
  • What are the most important considerations for Mars colonization?
  • The right role for NASA given private launchers like SpaceX, Blue Origin, Rocket Lab, etc
  • How much human safety should be a priority
  • What we should be developing? (e.g. focus on launch, or do we need more human health stuff)
  • Why should we settle other planets vs focus on taking care of Earth?
  • Why should we go to or explore space at all?
  • How will colonization affect society and culture?
  • Space weaponry laws (and how they affect space debris clearance)
  • Military vs. civilian space divides
  • How Earth imaging companies like Planet should handle privacy or security issues
  • Should countries try for self-sufficiency in space at greater expense
  • How should the US respond if China goes for the moon again?
  • Expanding commercial crew?
  • Deep Space Gateway pro/con
  • Planetary protection issues (e.g. Europa science?)

Other great places to start: