New Article: Paikowsky et al, Trends in Space Activities in 2014: The Significance of the Space Activities of Governments

Paikowsky, Deganit, Gil Baram, and Isaac Ben-Israel. “Trends in Space Activities in 2014 The Significance of the Space Activities of Governments.” Acta Astronautica (early view; online first).





This article addresses the principal events of 2014 in the field of space activities, and extrapolates from them the primary trends that can be identified in governmental space activities. In 2014, global space activities centered on two vectors. The first was geopolitical, and the second relates to the matrix between increasing commercial space activities and traditional governmental space activities. In light of these two vectors, the article outlines and analyzes trends of space exploration, human spaceflights, industry and technology, cooperation versus self-reliance, and space security and sustainability. It also reviews the space activities of the leading space-faring nations.



New Book: Eshet, The Interest in UFOs and Extraterrestrials in Israeli Society (in Hebrew)

Eshet, Techia. For Their Eyes Only. The Interest in UFOs and Extraterrestrials in Israeli Society. Tel Aviv: Resling, 2015 (in Hebrew).





In the last decade of the 20th century, more than fifty years since the first report of a “flying saucer” in the United States, there has been a growing interest in UFOs and extraterrestrials in Western culture in general and in Israel in particular. At times it seems that spacecrafts have landed in Israel en masse and thousands of extraterrestrials have conquered every part of its culture: the TV screens, daily newspapers, websites and billboards. The interest in UFOs and extraterrestrials, which flourished in Israel in various arenas during the 1990s, is discussed in this book in the context of addressing issues of identity and otherness.

This offers a different and fascinating perspective in a an extraordinary and innovative field of study; a “different” world, which is ostensibly distant, but in fact is close in many ways. “Glimpsing” into the world of those dealing with UFOs and extraterrestrials reveals not only this unique and intriguing subculture, but also very sheds light on the local and global culture of which we are all apart. The employment of extraterrestrial otherness reflects in this book the culture at large, including the changes and transformations that have taken place in Israeli society, alongside an observation of existential issues and concepts related to time, space, body and human existence. This gripping journey into the intricacies of the other and the marginal demonstrates that the preoccupation with the other, the cosmic, and the alien enables the strengthening of the relationship to the present and the local. In addition, the book discusses major cultural issues such as religion, politics, internal and external divides and conflicts, and pseudo-science.

To Their Eyes Only is based on anthropological research conducted within the framework of a doctoral thesis written by Techia Eshet. The study, which lasted several years, included Participant observations in conferences of “the Israeli Center for UFO Research” and in clinics offering treatment through extraterrestrials, along with interviews with practitioners in the field, and analysis of reports on evidence about seeing a UFO sightings or extraterrestrial encounters.

Techia (Thea) Eshet is a doctor of anthropology; Lecturer at the University of Haifa.

New Article: Paikowsky et al, Israeli Perspective on Space Security

Paikowsky, Deganit, Isaac Ben-Israel, and Tal Azoulay. “Israeli Perspective on Space Security.” In Handbook of Space Security (ed. Kai-Uwe Schrogl et al; New York: Springer, 2014), 493-505.





Israel has a 30-year tradition of space activity developing, operating, and launching satellites into space. As a small country, Israel enhances its power through space in ways otherwise not possible. This opportunity is accompanied by significant challenges, especially in maintaining the qualitative gap and preserving Israel’s position at the forefront of technology, as well as securing the space environment. The significance of space in Israel’s strategic conception shapes Israel’s perspective on space security. This chapter provides a short overview of the Israeli space program, outlines Israel’s strategic conception focusing on the role of its space program, analyzes Israel’s approach to space security, and outlines current challenges and opportunities space presents for Israel.