Working Paper BETA #2021-53

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Title : Downstream Space Activities in the New Space Era: Paradigm Shift and Evaluation Challenges

Author(s) : Kenza Bousedra

Abstract : New Space refers to the recent opening-up of the space sector to private companies. The liberalization of space activities, which coincides with the digital evolution of the economy, is associated with the rapid expansion of the downstream space segment, i.e., space-related commercial applications and services. In this paper, we explore the role of commercial space, and more specifically downstream activities, in the change occurring in the space sector. We discuss the implications of this trend for the measurement of commercial space and space policy. After a literature review that points out the space sector evaluation challenges, we analyze New Space and the service-oriented growth of commercial space. We finally propose a theoretical reflection on New Space as a shift toward a demand-pull paradigm. We conclude by discussing the interest of the dynamic approach to understand and evaluate commercial space in this new context.

Key-words : New Space, space sector, downstream space, satellite-based services, demand-pull

JEL Classification : L1, L5, L8, O33