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canadian space news

Canadian Space Agency's President Lisa Campbell speaks to the 2020 International Astronautical Conference (Transcript)


Newly elected President of the Canadian Space Agency Lisa Campbell shared her mandate with the 2020 IAC audience and areas of focus for the agency in the future.
Canadian Space Agency's President Lisa Campbell speaks to the 2020 International Astronautical Conference (Transcript)

by Rory MacDonald-Gauthier

A month ago


On the first day of the 2020 International Astronautical Conference, (registration is free, by the way) newly elected President of the Canadian Space Agency Lisa Campbell shared her mandate, as well as areas of focus for the agency in the future.

Campbell's opening remarks focused on three key areas:

  • working with international partners to improve best practices
  • growing Canada's space sector and capitalizing on commercial space
  • educating how space technology impacts our daily lives

You can find a full transcript of Campbell's remarks from the Head of Agencies Plenary Session below:

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This is a significant time for Canada's space program and it's very meaningful for me to be part of it. I want space to be a true economic engine for Canada and to contribute not only to back the economy but building it back better. 

First and foremost I'm a public servant, like many of you, and my goal is to improve the lives of Canadians. I see the tremendous potential of space. By searching for solutions to the problems of human space flight for example, we're also providing solutions for pressing challenges on Earth—from remote medicine to smart food production.

Canada is a vast country with a relatively small population. We rely on information and imagery gathered by space-based systems, to observe and monitor our country. Information gathered from space is now intertwined with major Government of Canada initiatives—from oceans to agriculture. Our space sector is pushing the boundaries of innovation, and creating technological transfers to applications on Earth. 

I want to work closely with international partners and exchange best practices. Whether exploring the universe or observing our planet, we need to do this together to ensure the benefits come back to earth to solve challenges for future generations.

My other goal is to grow our space sector. Now more than ever it's important as space agencies work to support our space sectors. In return, they'll contribute to our countries economic recoveries. Commercial space activities are on the ascent, and driving significant new growth—the economic potential is tremendous.

We need to show people the impact that space has on their everyday lives—in today's global context, we need to show it's economic potential. We need smart, targeted investments. We need to build a framework that supports the space sector's current environment. I've seen the advancements in other countries and I'll be looking closely at what steps we in Canada can support the creation of that enabling framework. 

Overall, my hope is for all of you to see more of what Canada can bring to the table. Thank you. Merci.