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Transatlantic relations the role of nationalism in multinational space cooperation

By Heather R. Crooks


Approved for public release, distribution unlimitedTransatlantic partnerships are becoming integral to the success of modern-day aerospace programs. NASA and the European Space Agency have cooperated for decades on such programs. As with all such collaboration between nations, conflicts have and continue to arise between the U.S. and Europe concerning joint aerospace initiatives. This thesis investigates the hypothesis that nationalism has been the major driver within ESA, as well as between ESA and NASA, that hampers multinational cooperation; this thesis will also look to international space visions and the notion of joint space exploration as a partnership, not a competition. Additionally, multiple case studies of space cooperation between the European Union and the U.S. are analyzed, as well as what this could mean for future partnerships. This thesis concludes that cooperation within ESA's member states is hampered by nationalism; however, as a multinational organization, ESA rarely allows nationalism to interfere with international cooperation in space. Though NASA has participated in a range of successful international programs, it has allowed periodic shows of nationalistic actions to hamper some of these projects. The author recommends that future space policy allow for more international cooperation, taking heed of lessons learned from past programs.US Air Force (USAF) author

Topics: International cooperation, Nationalism
Publisher: Monterey, California. Naval Postgraduate School
Year: 2009
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