General Assembly

The General Assembly is the supervisory body of ESPI. It is composed of representatives from the member organisations. It i.a. defines the general long-term guidelines for the Institute.

The General Assembly is chaired by FFG/ALR. Representation as of October 2017:

Name:Represented by:
ARIANESPACE Alexandre Archier
ASI Gabriella Arrigo and Maria Cristina Falvella
BELSPO Claire Chaudière
CNES Christophe Venet
DLR Nicolas Peter
ESA Isabelle Duvaux-Béchon
EUMETSAT Paul Counet
EUTELSAT Jean-François Bureau
FFG/ALR Andreas Geisler (Chairman)
NSC Hans Morten Synstnes
ROSA Marius-Ioan Piso
SES Christine Leurquin

Advisory Council

The Advisory Council gives the Secretariat medium-term orientations with respect to the research and network activities of the Institute.

The Advisory Council is chaired by Ms. Genevieve Fioraso. The current composition is the following:

Professional background 2003-2007, CEO of Minatec entreprises, a public-private company welcoming in clean rooms start ups in the field of micro and nanotechnologies and biotechnologies, created via partnerships between private companies and public research laboratories, mainly CEA-Tech...

From 2001 to 2004, part time expert for a telecom operator (Orange) in the field of innovative services for health and social applications. In 1999, creation and general management for 2 years of the Rhône-Alpes agency for the diffusion of digital in regional SMEs (ARN, Agence Régionale du Numérique). From 1995 to 1999, director of cabinet of the mayor of Grenoble. From 1989 to 1995, deputy general manager of a start-up, CORYS, spin-off from the French Energy commission (CEA), specialized in the design of simulators for training operators in the field of energy (nuclear, thermal, electric networks) and transportation (trains and tramways). In charge of institutional relations and European RandT projects (Eurêka, Phare and Tacis programmes). From 1979 to 1986 : collaborator of Hubert Dubedout, Mayor of Grenoble and member of the French Parliament, successively in charge of press and documentation, communication and Parliament relations.

Teacher during 2 years in Amiens from 1975 to 1977, then moved to Grenoble in 1978. Political commitment Since 2015, Member of scientific boards of Marseilles Infectiology IHU (Institut Hospitalo-Universitaire) and Clinatec in Grenoble, of Paris Imagine Health Scientific Foundation and of the University Grenoble Alpes Foundation. From January to July 2016: missioned by French Minister Manuel Valls for a report on space “Open Space, the opening as answer to the challenges of the space sector” ( April 2015: Back to the French Parliament, member of the Defence Commission and parliamentary space group.

2014-2015: Secretary of state for higher education and research, including space, within Manuel Valls 1 and 2 governments. Resignation in March, 2015, for personal reasons. As minister, government’s representative and contributor for Ministerial Conference of the European Space Agency in Napoli, 2012, and Luxembourg, 2014 where Ariane 6 launcher was decided by ESA state-members 2012-2014: Minister for higher education and research, including space, within Jean-Marc Ayrault government 2007-2012: member of the French Parliament and of the Parliament Office for the evaluation of scientific and technological choices (OPECST), member of the commission for economic development and energy.

Publication of 3 reports on industry and energy budgets, 1 report on synthetic biology and 1 report on technological transfer from research to industry 2001-2012: deputy mayor of the City of Grenoble and 1st vice-president of the Grenoble urban area, in charge of economic development, universities, research and innovation.

Since 1 April 2011, Gerd Gruppe is Member of the DLR Executive Board, responsible for the German Space Admin istration. Born in 1952, he grew up near Aachen in the very Western part of Germany.

He received a degree in mining from RWTH Aachen University. Upon completion of an internship at the Bureau of Mines in Munich, he obta ined a doctorate degree in Energy Marketing at Augsburg wh ile continuing to pursue his career. He then transferred to the Bavarian State Ministry for Economic Affairs, Infrastructure, Transport and Technology. Initially, he was responsible for promoting research and for technology transfer, and later had his first professional experience with space.

In the late 1980s he was involved in the establishment of the German Space Operations Center (GSOC) at DLR's Oberpfaffenhofen site. Later, as Head of the Department of Research, Innovation and Technology at the same ministry, he greatly advanced the development of Bavaria as a location for space activities, particular ly with his involvement in the Galileo Control Centre and the world-renowned Robotics and Mechatronics Center - both based at DLR Oberpfaffen hofen.


1951: Born at Groningen, the Netherlands (16/10)

1977: Graduated at the University of Groningen and the Agricultural University of Wageningen in General Economics and Agricultural Development Economics

1977: Ministry of Foreign Affairs in The Hague: servicing research-projects for developing countries

1978-1979: Servicing for the UN-FAO at the Ministry of Agricultural Development of Panama/Santiago de Veraguas: planning the development of the Panama’s agricultural sector

1980-2017: Ministry of Economic Affairs in The Hague

1980-1995: manager international trade policy/GATT-Uruguay-Round/WTO

1995-2009: manager Economic aspects of Environmental Policy and Spatial Development

2009-2011: manager International Innovation Programmes (EU/Eureka)

2012-2017: manager Netherlands Space Policy/head of delegation to the ESA-Council; i.a. facilitator of the final agreement of the Luzern ESA-Ministerial (Dec. 2016)

2017: Retired on 01/10/2017; since that date I occasionally join missions of the NL-Ministry of Foreign Affairs to inspect NL-Embassies and CG’s (at the request of the Ministry of Economic Affairs)

Languages: Dutch, English, German, French and Spanish

Since 1997, Sergio Marchisio is full professor of international law at the Sapienza University of Rome. He started his academic career in the Seventies as assistant professor and chargé de cours of international law at the Universities of Florence and Camerino. In 1979, following a concourse at the national level, he gained the title of full professor and was called firstly at the University of Camerino and then at the University of Perugia, until his appointment at the University Sapienza of Rome in 1997. He is Director of the 2nd Level Master Course in International Protection of Human Rights and of the Training Course on Refugees and Migrants. Member of the Scientific Board of the PhD in “Public, Comparative and International Law” and Member of the Academic Board of the Sapienza School for Advanced Studies. His main scientific interests are, among others, the formation of general international law, the law of international organisations, international environmental law, human rights and disarmament, space law, development cooperation law.

Author of around 200 publications, among which: "Diritto ambientale. Profili internazionali, europei, comparati, Torino, 2017”; “Disarmo, limitazione degli armamenti e diritti umani”, Napoli, 2016; “Corso di diritto internazionale”, Torino, 2014; “L’ONU. Il diritto delle Nazioni Unite”, Bologna 2012; “ “Rio 1992. Vertice per la Terra”, Milano, 1993; “Le basi militari nel diritto internazionale”, Milano, 1984; "La cooperazione per lo sviluppo nel diritto delle Nazioni Unite", Napoli, 1977. In 2016, he was called at the Hague Academy of International Law to give a special course on "Les activités spatiales internationales entre droit public et droit privé". Member of the Editorial Board of “I diritti dell’uomo. Cronache e battaglie”, “Ordine internazionale e diritti umani”, “The Aviation and Space Journal” and “Chinese Society of Astronautics Journal”.

Founder and Former Director of the Institute for International Legal Studies of the National Research Council (1995-2011), he is now Associate Professor to the Institute. During ten years, he supervised and edited the research on the "Italian Practice of International Law", published in 1995 by the CNR (I-VIII volumes). Member of the Board of Directors of the Italian Society for International Organization and Member of the Italian Human Rights Committee. Member of the Scientific Committee of the Italian Council for Refugees (CIR); Correspondent Member of the International Institute for the Unification of Private Law (UNIDROIT); Italian Correspondent of the TMC Asser Institute, The Hague. During ten years (2001-2011), he acted as Secretary General of the Italian Society of International Law (SIDI). From 1995 to 2015, he was also adjunct professor of European Union Law at Faculty of Law of the LUISS G. Carli University.

He is an internationally recognized expert on space law, field that he covered with several publications, starting from "Lezioni di diritto aerospaziale" in 2000. Co-Director of the Master Course in Space Policy and Institutions, organized by the CNR, the Italian Society for International Organization (SIOI) and the Italian Space Agency (ASI). Member of the Scientific Committee of the Master IDEST "Droit des telecommunications et des nouvelles technologies" of Paris Saclay, Faculté de droit Jean Monnet. He is Member of the Board of Directors of the International Institute for Space law (IISL), confirmed in September 2016. Full Member of the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA). Member of the Académie de l’air et l’espace (ANAE), the London Institute of Space Policy and Law, and the Chinese Academy of Astronautics. Since 2015, he is member of The Hague Space Resources Governance Working Group.

In 2011, he received the Award IAA for Social Sciences for his contribution on space law. In 2015, he received the IISL Distinguished Service Award for his leadership in the development of international law and institutions and his leading role for advancing international space law in the United Nations and other intergovernmental bodies. Since 2007 he is Chairman of the European Centre for Space Law (ECSL) within the European Space Agency (ESA). Since 2017 is Member of the Advisory Council of the European Space Policy Institute (ESPI).

Beside his scientific achievements, he also carried out a number of functions as Legal Advisor at the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. Italian Delegate to many international diplomatic conferences, such as the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (Rio de Janeiro, 1992); the United Nations Diplomatic Conference of Plenipotentiaries on the Establishment of an International Criminal Court (Rome, 1998); the Diplomatic Conference to Adopt a Mobile Equipment Convention and an Aircraft Protocol (Cape Town, 2001).

Since 1997, he is Italian Delegate to the UN Committee on the peaceful uses of outer space (COPUOS, Vienna), where he served as Chairman of the Legal Subcommittee (2004-2006). In 2010, he was elected co-chair of the Expert Group D of the Working Group of the COPUOS Scientific and Technical Subcommittee (STSC) on the Long term Sustainability of the Outer Space Activities (LTSSA). Italian Delegate to the European Union Council's committes on space and disarmament, he was member of the task force of the EEAS-EU for the International Draft International Code of Conduct on Space Activities (ICoC). In 2015, he was appointed by the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy as chair of the multilateral negotiations on an ICoC held at the United Nations in New York. In 2012, he was appointed by the UN Secretary General member of the Group of Governmental Experts (GGE) on Outer Space Transparency and Confidence-Building Measures established by UN General Assembly resolution 65/68. Between 2001 and 2012, he chaired the Committee of Governmental Experts entrusted to negotiate the UNIDROIT Space Assets Protocol to the Cape Town Convention on International Interests in Mobile Equipment. In 2012, he was elected Chair of the Commission of the Whole of the Berlin Diplomatic Conference, which adopted the Protocol. He is member of the Specialized Panel of Arbitrators of the Permanent Court of Arbitration established pursuant to the Optional Rules for Arbitrations of disputes dealing with spacer matters.

In 2009, he was appointed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Education, University and Research (MIUR) as member of the Task-Force for setting up the Italian Register of the Objects launched in Outer Space. Since 2014, he is Member of the Board of Directors of the Italian Space Agency.

2016 – now

Chair of Eurisy

Acting collectively to bridge Space & Society

2014 – now

Chair of YouSpace

Platform to improve interaction between Universities & Professionals of Space

2007 – 2014


- Vice-President of the Social Affairs Commission

- Full Member of the Foreign Relations and Defense Commission

- Full Member at the Advisory Committee of the Senate for Gender Equality

- President of the "Space" Workgroup at the Senate

- President of the European Interparliamentary Conference of Space (2013)

- Full Member of the Finance and Economic Affairs Commission

- "Woman of Peace" Prize by the Belgian Council of Women (2011)

- MR President at the Senate (2009-2010)

Benelux Parliament

- Member of Benelux Parliament

Interparliamentary Union – Belgian group

- Vice-President at the UIP in the bilateral sections of Portugal, Azerbaijan and Georgia

- Member of the bilateral section of Armenia

President of « La paix passe par les femmes » Association

The aim is to bring women of South Caucasus to get involved in the process of peace and reconciliation.

2003 – 2007

Federal Deputy

Full Member of

- The Comission of Economy, Scientific Policy, Education, National Scientific and Cultural Institutions, Middle Classes and Agriculture

- The Commission in charge of Commercial and Economic law issues

- The Advisory Committee for scientific and technological matters

Alternate member of

- the Commission of Space at the Senate

2000 – 2003

Provincial Deputy

Economic Affairs and Preventive Health Care and Health Centers

President of the Economic Development Agency IDELUX

1993 – 1999

Full Deputy in Finances and Tourism

1973 – 1982

Employed by Sybetra as a Project Manager for the construction of a phosphate’s factory in Iraq (Akashat and Alkaim)


1971 – 1975

Master’s Degree in Political Science at « Université Libre de Bruxelles »

Date and place of birth

Born: 29 February 1944 in Rakvere, Estonia


1969-1972 Astronomical Council AS USSR, postgraduate student

1964 -1969 Moscow State University, astronomy (cum laude)

1962 -1964 Tartu State University, physics

Scientific Career

1972 Moscow State University, Astronomical Institute, Cand. Sci. in Physics and Mathematics

1984 Institute of Space Research, Moscow, Dr.Sci. in Physics and Mathematics

1972 -1974 Institute of Physics and Astronomy Estonian AS, Junior Researcher,

1974 – 1988 Astronomical Council of the USSR AS, Junior Researcher, Executive Secretary, Senior and Leading Researcher

1988-2015 University of Tartu, Professor of Astrophysics, Head of Physics Dept. (1992-1998)

1972-1973 Copernicus scholarship (Poland)

1997 Estonian Academy of Sciences, Member of Academy

1994 Göttingen Academy of Sciences, Gauss Guest Professor

1997 Amsterdam University Guest Professor

Political Career

2003 – 2015 Member of the Estonian Parliament, Speaker (2003-2006 and 2007-2013), Vice-Speaker (2006)

Membership in other organisations

2014- ESPI Advisory council member

2004 - Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences, foreign member

2001 Royal Astronomical Society, associate member

1996 – International Astronomical Union (IAU); member

European Astronomical Society (EAS)

1998 – 2003 Estonian Science Foundation (EstSF), Chairperson of the Council;

2002 - 2004 European Council, DG “Science and Society”, Committee Adviser

2002 – 2004 ENWISE (Enlarge “Women in Science” to East), Expert Group, Chair

2000 – 2005 ALLEA (All European Academies), Committee “Science & Ethics, member

2002 - 2005 Descartes Grand Jury, member; president 2003- 2005

1984 – 1988 USSR Academy of Sciences Belopolski Astrophysics Prize Committee, Executive Secretary

USSR Academy of Sciences, Journal “Soviet Astronomy Letters”, Editorial Board, Executive Secretary, 1982 – 1988


More than 100 publication


2014 Skytte medal, Tartu University

2008 Medal of the Baltic Assembly

2008 Grand Cross of the Order of Orange-Nassau, Nederlands

2008 Grand Cross of the Order of Crown, Belgium

2008 Order of the National Coat of Arms, 2nd class, Republic of Estonia

2007 Royal Order of the North Star, 1st class, Sweden

2007 Grand Decoration of Honour in Gold with Sash for Services to the Republic of Austria

2005 Commander's Cross of the Order of Republic of Poland

2004 Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic

2004 The Medal of the Estonian Academy of Sciences

2003 Grand Officer of the Order of Infante Dom Henrique, Portugal

2002 Republic of Estonia Science Award in Exact Sciences

2001 Order of the White Star, 4th class

Since March 2003, Ingolf Schaedler is serving as Deputy Director General for Innovation at the Austrian Ministry for Transport, Innovation and Technology (BMVIT). In this function he is responsible for the development and implementation of the Ministry’s technology policy, its strategic technology programmes and the related R & D infrastructure. On the level of the European Union Ingolf Schaedler is representing Austria in various high level committees related to Research and Technology Policy, Satellite Navigation and Space Policy.

In 2012, Ingolf Schaedler chaired the World Congress on “Intelligent Transport Systems” (ITS) and since December 2010, Ingolf Schaedler serves as chairman of the governing board of the EU-Joint Programming Initiative “Urban Europe”.

Ingolf Schaedler studied Economics at the University Vienna and International Law and Politics at Johns Hopkins University, Paul Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, Bologna, Italy.

In 1969, after the Soviet occupation, Mr Dobeš left the Czechoslovakia and started his studies at the Munich Technical University. After graduation, he established his own IT and Space company and worked mainly with DLR.

In 2006, after returning to his homeland, Mr Dobeš was appointed government commissioner for the Czech Republic's candidacy for the relocation of the GSA from Brussels to Prague. Following the decision of the Council of the EU in 2010, he was in charge of legislation and infrastructure preparations for the GSA relocation, which took place in autumn 2012. Thanks to the successful candidacy, Mr Dobeš has been appointed government commissioner for the European GNSS Agency in 2012 and holds this office until today.

Since 2007 Mr Dobeš participated in the accession negotiations with the ESA, which were successfully completed in 2008. From 2008 to 2017 he represented the Czech Republic in the ESA Council, since 2011 he acted as the Head of Delegation.

Since 2011 Mr Dobeš is a full member and spokesman of the Coordination Council of the Minister of Transport for Space Activities. From 2014 to 2015 he was also Deputy Minister of Transport for Aerospace, ITS, Science and Research and IT.

From 2015 onwards

Counsellor (adviser) of DG for Internal Market, industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs-

Directorate-General GROW

FROM 2010-2014

Counsellor (adviser) for International Cooperation, Galileo, Copernicus, Space Policy, Defence and Security.

Chief negotiator on the Global Navigation Satellites Systems-GNSS negotiations with USA, China and Russia (from 2010-2015).


From 2005 to 2009 (5 years)

Minister of Agriculture, Rural Development and Fisheries of the XVII Governement - Portugal



DG Enterprise and Industry – Food and Biotechnology Unit

Chief negotiator and Coordinator of trade negotiations, bilateral and multilateral, in the Food industry: WTO, European Economic Area –EEA, Switzerland, Turkey, Eastern European Countries, South Africa, Mercosur, Mexico, Tunisia, Morocco

From 2001 to 2002

Principal Adviser at the Portuguese Permanent Representation to the European Union (Brussels), Foreign Affairs Ministry of Portugal

From 1977 to 1994

Senior official at the Ministry of Agriculture, Portugal, where he held several management positions: , Director for Agricultural Markets, Head of Unit on Cereals, Head of Unit on Monetary Issues and Prices. He participated in the access negotiations and the implementation of the Common Agricultural Policy in Portugal

Mr Silva holds a Degree in Economics obtained at the Lisbon Higher Institute of Economics-ISE

Mr, Silva participates regularly at international conferences representing the EU Commission – DG GROW; (ex in 2013-2014)

- Conférence Parlementaire sur L'Europe de la Défense – AN Française, Paris

-The Globalisation and the Internationalisation of the Defense and Security Industry Madrid

- Opportunities of the Atlantic Relations – S Paulo, Brazil

- European Forum for Investments in Paraguay – Asunción, Paraguay

- International conference on Space –Washington


ESPI - European Space Policy Institute

Schwarzenbergplatz 6

A-1030 Vienna

(Entrance: Zaunergasse 1)

Phone +43 1 718 11 18 -0

Fax +43 1 718 11 18 -99