The Influence of Epistemic Communities on International Political Negotiations about the Space Debris Problem

  • Miloslav Machoň
Keywords: epistemic communities, space debris, UNOOSA, UNCOPUOS, IAF, COSPAR, IADC, IISL


Since the 1970’s the debate about the rising importance of transnational relations has existed in international relations. Apart from states, the related research also focuses on other actors, including epistemic communities. The article uses the concept of epistemic communities and finds whether the activity of epistemic communities determines the process of the international management of outer space in the case of the political negotiations relating to space debris in UNCOPUOS and UNOOSA. The activity of epistemic communities exists in the political negotiations relating to space debris in UNCOPUOS and UNOOSA, but it has not been reflected in the related scholarly literature. Epistemic communities from the nongovernmental organizations IAF, COSPAR and IISL contributed to setting the space debris problem on the agenda of UNCOPUOS. Also, under the influence of epistemic communities from the governmental organization IADC, UNCOPUOS adopted guidelines preventing the creation of further amounts of space debris.

Author Biography

Miloslav Machoň

Born in 1988, he is a PhD candidate at the Jan Masaryk Centre for International Studies at the University of Economics in Prague, where he focuses on the dynamics of international regimes in connection with the management of satellite telecommunications. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and his Master's degree in International Relations at the University of West Bohemia in Pilsen. He is also a member of the West Bohemian branch of the Czech Astronomical Society.

Research Articles