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Space Entrepreneurship Forum, Jan. 31 and Feb. 1, 2013

The Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, in collaboration with the Stanford Center of Excellence for Commercial Space Transportation, is holding a one-and-a-half day forum focused on the emerging entrepreneurial space industry. The forums on Thursday, Jan. 31, and Friday, Feb. 1, will have a special emphasis on the economic policy issues involved.

The principal presentations will be on the second day, Friday, featuring high-profile individuals and panels with informed economists as discussants. The afternoon of the first day, Thursday, will focus on two key policy questions hindering the development of commercial space.

Although the events are free, pre-registration for each day is required. All Stanford students, faculty, and staff are welcome. The event is at the John A. and Cynthia Fry Gunn Building, 366 Galvez Street, Stanford University. The Gunn Building is between the Landau Economics Building and the Arrillaga Alumni Center.

Friday, February 1

The U.S. space program is undergoing a major transition from government control to an entrepreneurial space industry. Leading this initiative are companies such as SpaceX, Virgin Galactic, and Bigelow. At the same time, U.S. government leaders at NASA and the FAA are working to support this private-public partnership in space.

On Friday, February 1, the forum has planned a fascinating discussion of the challenges and opportunities for private space ventures. Among the questions that will be discussed are:

  • • Opportunities for space industry entrepreneurs
  • • Lowering the cost of space launches
  • • Market opportunities for space tourism, exploration, mining, and communication
  • • Using economic incentives to foster new technologies and explorations

Key space industry speakers, economists, and companies include Lori Garver of NASA, George Nield of the FAA, Bill Nye, Ed Lu, Petra Moser of Stanford, and representatives from SpaceX, Virgin Galactic, XCOR, Google Lunar X Prize, Sierra Nevada Corporation, and United Launch Alliance.

Here is the agenda for Friday and the registration form.

Thursday, January 31

For those especially interested in space policy, we will have a Policy Workshop on Thursday afternoon, January 31. Following an overview of the market by Ken Davidian of the FAA and Scott Hubbard of Stanford, we will look closely at two policy areas where economics can especially inform and contribute to the policy analysis. The first is ITAR policy, which restricts some U.S. space activities due to security concerns. The second is the use of auctions to help allocate launch rights and the efficient use of launches. Participating economists include Paul Milgrom and Greg Rosston of Stanford.

Here is the agenda for Thursday afternoon and the registration form.



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