Peace in Space for Our Time?: United States Strategical Considerations in Outer Space Policy
Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
The politics of outer space has in recent years been given attention from political elites and scientist due to increasing usage and reliance on space based assets, and due to increasing numbers of actors trying to utilize the benefits of space. Concerns have been raised if the increasing military usage of space will lead to a future weaponization of space, making some political leaders and scholars claiming the inevitability of space weaponization. In this thesis I investigate why the United States of America this far has chosen not to weaponize space based on the strategical setting of outer space politics. The research question guiding this thesis reads: What strategic considerations explain the US decision not to weaponize outer space? In order to evaluate the strategic setting and US strategical considerations I apply Game Theory and Non-Formal Rational Choice Theory to highlight what is causing the greatest space faring nation not to weaponize space. I empirically base this study on official space policy documents and one report written by an official commission to asses US national security space management. Based on the strategic setting of outer space politics and US strategical considerations it is found that the US has not commenced a process leading to the weaponization of space since such development would not increase its national security, but rather in several ways decrease it. I conclude that a process of space weaponization is not likely to be initiated by the US in the current strategical setting.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. , 56 p.
outer space politics, space security, weaponization, strategical setting, rational choice theory
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-280673OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-280673DiVA: diva2:911713
Subject / course
Master Programme in Political Science
Nilsson, Niklas, PhD