Critical issues in international space law: 2023 and beyond – Law School: Events Critical issues in international space law: 2023 and beyond – Law School: Events

Critical issues in international space law: 2023 and beyond

Critical issues in international space law: 2023 and beyond

Panel discussion and cocktail reception
In-person event

We are entering a new era of space exploration and exploitation, placing space law at the forefront of the international legal agenda. In this commercial space age, private space companies pursue their corporate agendas alongside the public initiatives of national space agencies. The domain of ‘space’ is now more congested, competitive and commercialised than any previous era. The advances in space technology have brought with it new challenges including, but not limited to concerns relating to space debris, the cluttering of orbits, spectrum allocations, space militarisation and weaponization, mining of space resources, space tourism, commercialisation and space sustainability. The rapid evolution of the space industry raises the question of whether the existing international legal framework effectively addresses these emerging challenges.

This panel will consider some of the present critical issues in space law and the challenges going forward for space global governance.

Welcome and launch of Sydney Law School’s Space Law program

Professor Simon Bronitt (Head of School and Dean, Sydney Law School)

Introduction to panel discussion

Isobel Haddow (Industry Analyst, Space Industry Association of Australia)

Panel chair

Professor Chester Brown (Sydney Law School)



Dr Rebecca Connolly (Sydney Law School)

Crowding of the Low-Earth Orbit – the rise in military and commercial space assets in the LEO.

With the cost to access space rapidly decreasing, we are witnessing a rush to place commercial and military assets in the LEO. The rapid increase in these space assets raises complex issues relating to space-traffic management, orbital collisions, national security, space debris, impacts on astronomy and overall space sustainability. This talk will discuss the crowding and competition in the LEO and the need for regulation.

Dr Annie Handmer

Space Debris – mitigation and remediation strategies and the challenge of dual-use technologies.

This talk will discuss the importance of a multi-disciplinary perspective to tackle challenging regulatory issues relating to the rising cloud of space debris. In particular, the relevance of Science and Technology Studies as a lens through which to understand space law and to address the interwoven issues of politics, technology and social concerns going forward.

Professor Steven Freeland (Western Sydney University/Bond University, Law)

Space Law “Big Issues” – the geopolitics of space and the challenges of achieving multilateral consensus.

The past few decades have witnessed significant changes to the space landscape. While the existing international space law represents an important base for regulation, it is clear that further multilateral standards and instruments will be required to more comprehensively address the next stage of space activities. This talk will discuss the challenges for achieving global space governance on some of the ‘big issues’ in space law and the pathway forward.


Wednesday 10 May, 2023

Time: 5.30-7.30pm AEST (5.30pm registration for 5.45pm start, followed by a cocktail reception)

Venue: Law Foyer, Level 2, New Law Building (F10), Eastern Avenue, Camperdown Campus

CPD Points: 2

This event is being held in-person at Sydney Law School.


This event is proudly presented by Sydney Law School at the University of Sydney and the Space Industry Association of Australia.



May 10 2023


5:30 pm - 7:30 pm

More Info



Law Foyer, Level 2
New Law Building (F10), Eastern Avenue, University of Sydney (Camperdown Campus)


Professional Learning & Community Engagement
02 9351 0248

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