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Air and Space Law graduates present paper at IAC 2020

Recent graduates of the Adv. LLM in Air and Space Law presented their paper titled "Leiden LLM students and the legal and policy aspects of space resource utilization", during the International Astronautical Congress 2020. The IAC is the largest space conference in the world and this year it took place virtually from 12 to 15 October 2020.

The paper was co-authored by Aniela Barug, Scott Schneider and Wataru Inagaki, who graduated in August 2020, with the guidance of Prof. Tanja Masson-Zwaan and Dimitra Stefoudi. It was based on a workshop that took place during the course Space Law - European and Commercial Perspectives in spring 2020 and focused on space resource utilization and particularly the outcome of the Hague International Space Resources Governance Working Group.

Space resource activities have been on the agenda of the UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (UNCOPUOS), where State delegates present and exchange their views, and has also been the subject of recent national space regulations.

The first part of the workshop was dedicated to a presentation of the legal aspects of space resource utilisation and particularly the Building Blocks for the Development of an International Framework on Space Resource Activities. The Building Blocks are the result of the Hague Working Group and have been presented at many international forums, including UNCOPUOS. The IIASL was the founding partner of the Working Group and has hosted its administration from its beginning in 2016 until its end in late 2019. 

In the second part of the workshop, the students were split into groups, representing different stakeholders, such as industry, less developed countries and space-faring nations, and were asked to formulate their views accordingly, share them with the other groups and receive feedback from the instructors and their fellow students. The discussion revolved mainly around the legitimacy of national laws granting ownership rights for space resources and the sharing of benefits from space resource activities. During this workshop, the students had the chance to put their theoretical knowledge into practice and observe how space law is shaped by space policy in international discussions. 

As every year, many IIASL alumni presented their work during the conference.  

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