Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Our students took part in the Summer Course on Space Law and Policy in Austria

During September 1-14, 2013, the 22nd Summer Course on Space Law and Policy was held in Klosterneuburg, near Vienna (Austria). The course was organized with the support of the University of Vienna (Universität Wien). Students of our Department of International Law Nikita Lazarev and Irina Chernykh were fortunate to participate in the Course.

The Summer Course is a two-week programme of lectures by the European scientists and specialists who are leading in their respective fields. The topic of the 22nd Summer Course was chosen among the most debatable issues of contemporary international space law, it was space debris. During the programme students discussed potential risks of space debris, complexities connected to mitigation of space debris and prevention of its generation, legal problems associated with space debris, including the problem of the lack of a legal definition.
By the end of the program, students, divided into the international teams, had to prepare a project aimed to contribute to space debris mitigation. The culmination of the project had a form of a speech followed by a presentation and it took place at the Vienna office of the United Nations, in which the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (OOSA) is situated.
In the end the winners in three categories were declared, i.e. the best presentation, the best written part and the best team. The main prize was won by the «Space Leviathan» project, but the team of Irina Chernykh won the nomination «The best written part». Team of Nikita Lazarev was marked by the Commission for the originality of ideas and creative approach.
In addition, as a part of the cultural program of the Course the students visited the Klosterneuburg Abbey and its wine cellars, visited the operetta «Frau Luna» in «Volksoper» Opera, and also had the opportunity to walk through Vienna and Klosterneuburg. On the day of the defense of projects students had a tour through the Vienna Office of the United Nations, in which they were able to visit the museum of space exploration.
We would like to express gratitude to all the professors, who lectured for the 22nd Summer Course on Space Law, as well as to Professor S. Marchisio, Chairman of the European Centre for Space Law, sponsoring the Course, Dr. P. Achilleas, inspirer of the Course, Professor I. Marboe, who was responsible for the Course organization on behalf of the Vienna University, K. Rybarova, the Executive Secretary of ECSL, who prepared and coordinated the Course, and the tutors, who provided the students with all the support. Also we express our special gratitude to the Department of International Law of our University and the representative of the Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) O.A. Volynskaya for the support and assistance provided during preparing the Russian students for attending the Summer Course.

Chernykh Irina and Lazarev