Europe and the United States: Space Exploration the Old Fashioned (and Smart) Way
Nations pursue space exploration for a variety of reasons. The United States was rocked by the launch of Sputnik in 1957 and the Soviet Union's subsequent success in putting the first man into orbit. The American response, energized by President Kennedy, culminated in the Apollo moon landings.
The current reviews of space policy in Europe and the United States offer an opportunity to advance human exploration as well as unmanned science missions. But to do so, President Obama and his European colleagues must chart a new route. Europe and the United States should together view space exploration not as the exclusive domain of scientists and government agencies, but of our entire societies. To engage the best of our societies in space exploration, we should return to that tested method of encouraging exploration, the prize.