Macrothinking in strategic space planning

Part of the Springer Praxis Books book series (PRAXIS)


To open up and develop the space frontier, a new type of macrothinking is required, as implied in the above quotation. Such reasoning and actions were evident during the Apollo mission period when the human family was “turned on” to the daring achievement of rocketing humans to the Moon! Unfortunately, since that decade (the 1960s), space programs throughout the world have been the exclusive concern of national space agencies, aerospace contractors, planetary scientists, and government legislators. Their somewhat myopic focus on special interest missions has garnered only the support of direct beneficiaries and committed space activists. As a result, public interest has waned over technical accomplishments and failures which do not capture the imagination of Everyman. Because would-be space planners fail to provide a 21st-century vision of humankind’s future within our Solar System, they do not inspire the masses to financially back risk-taking endeavors in the orbital environment. Further, too many mission planners and managers neither control escalating costs nor provide adequate information about the return on investment, especially the spinoff value of space technologies. Instead they alienate suffering taxpayers, potential investors, and politicians with grandiose plans that are hugely costly to implement and manage effectively. Only in this first decade of the new millennium have space entrepreneurs recaptured the public’s interest in orbital enterprises, as evident in less expensive spaceplanes, space inflatables, and space tourism. Whether offworld endeavors are undertaken by sponsors in the public or private sectors, or through global consortia, a different and innovative type of “macro” thinking, planning, and management is required, as will be discussed in this and Chapter 8.


Space Exploration European Space Agency Launch Site Space Resource Lunar Landing 
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