Report: ‘What on Earth Is the Value of Space?’

July 6, 2022  - By
Image: Inmarsat

Almost half of respondents are aware of GPS and satellite navigation. (Image: Inmarsat)

Inmarsat has launched a report “What on Earth is the value of space?” that surveys public attitudes towards space.

The satellite company spoke to 20,000 people in 11 countries across the globe to uncover their perceptions of space, what happens “up there” and how they think it impacts life here on Earth.

The survey found that most people have no idea about the benefits of space. Only one third are excited about space, with 47% concerned about space junk and just 8% associating space with communications and connectivity.

Just 8% of respondents associate space with communications and connectivity.

“From connecting rural communities to helping solve climate change, we know the enormous potential space holds to improve life on Earth, and what it has already brought us,”  Inmarsat said in a statement. “Now, both the magnificent possibilities and the potential risks of space, which Inmarsat is working hard to address, need to be showcased to the world.”

The report also features contributions from renowned figures in the sector including Scott Kelly, former astronaut and commander of the International Space Station, and Josef Aschbacher, director general of the European Space Agency.

“The research findings mark a real wake-up call for the space industry,” Inmarsat said. “It’s clear that people have a low understanding of the breadth and richness of the work being done in space today. Perhaps because the technology deployed is essentially invisible, people do not appear to understand the role space is already playing in their everyday lives, nor its potential to deliver a brighter future for our planet.”

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About the Author: Tracy Cozzens

Senior Editor Tracy Cozzens joined GPS World magazine in 2006. She also is editor of GPS World’s newsletters and the sister website Geospatial Solutions. She has worked in government, for non-profits, and in corporate communications, editing a variety of publications for audiences ranging from federal government contractors to teachers.