KY Space Grant EMG-22-002: Developing a Course on the “Economics of Space Exploration”

Grants and Contracts Details


This project aims to develop an undergraduate course on the “Economics of Space Exploration”. The central theme will be the question of how to deploy people and resources to efficiently explore outer space. Students will learn about the history of humankind’s space endeavors, the current state of exploration, and possible near-future paths, all from an economics point of view. Pertinent topics include the role of the US government and its relationship with private companies, funding basic science, the markets for low Earth orbit satellites, space tourism, and asteroid mining, protecting the outer space environment, international cooperation, the US Space Force, the Artemis and Gateway lunar programs, establishing a presence on Mars, the spill-over effects from space-based innovation to life on Earth, incentivizing the development of the needed skills and technologies – possibly across generations, and diversifying both the space-related workforce and access to space. A primary mission of the course will be to inspire students from academic disciplines and other groups not usually exposed to space-based research. The course also will be accessible to students already engaged in traditional space- related fields as a way to broaden their exposure to interdisciplinary views on the exploration of outer space.
Effective start/end date1/1/239/30/23


  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration


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