Looking Up from Down Under: Australian attitudes to national space activities

Tristan Moss, Kathryn Hasani, Aleks Deejay

    Research output: Book/ReportCommissioned report

    Abstract

    Space-based activity and technology underpin the daily lives of Australians, the national and global economy, and national security. In turn, public support is vital in determining how and to what extent the nation engages in space activities. To build an understanding of Australians’ attitudes towards national space activities and technologies, the authors conducted the first comprehensive examination of public opinion on the nation’s current involvement in space. The nationally representative survey focused on public engagement with space, attitudes towards national space activities, space security and challenges, and the country’s future direction in space. The findings show that the public is interested in space but lacks awareness about what Australia does there. Australians view development in space favourably, but do not necessarily support all national space activities or initiatives. For many, space is closely associated with national security with many Australians concerned about space debris, planetary impacts by space objects and conflicts in space. At the same time, Australians are supportive of blue-sky space research and believe that the nation should prioritise communications technologies and Earth observation in its approach to space. These results show that Australians’ views on the nation’s future in space are complex, but a deeper understanding of the place of space in the national consciousness is a vital foundation for Australia’s future space efforts.
    Original languageEnglish
    Commissioning bodyAustralian centre for space governance
    Publication statusPublished - 2023

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