Dear members and friends of IISL,
At the occasion of the closing of the 70th International Astronautical Congress, held during the past week in Washington D.C., I would like to thank all members who have contributed to an immensly successful IISL Colloquium. Foremost, I would like to thank our Executive Secretary Diane Howard and our Treasurer Dennis Burnett for their tireless work. In addition, sincere thanks go to our colloquium coordinators Lesley-Jane Smith and Catherine Doldirina as well as all session chairs, rapporteurs and assistants, to name here specifically PJ Blount. They demonstrated the power of IISL as a volunteer organisation.
IISL was present throughout the Congress and enriched its substance with highlighting the importance of space law. For our community, the exchanges amongst ourselves but also with other disciplines in the space sector were again most fruitful. IISL contributed considerably to the two main themes of the Congress, which were exploration and space traffic management. In our sessions, roundtables and speaking appointments in global networking forums and special sessions, we brought forward the relevance of the rule of law as the basis for space activities benefitting all. A class of its own was again the Manfred Lachs Moot Court Competition, which is elaborated here.
The photo shows one of the highlights of our colloquium, the young scholars session. Together with the NASA Legal Counsel Sumara Thompson-King and Board Member Marta Mejia-Kaiser, I was happy to pose with our next generation, which presented their bright ideas. The other photo, taken at our outstanding dinner in the Library of Congress, shows our awardee for the Lifetime Achievement Award, Christian Brünner. Most senior distinguished personalities on the same inclusive spot with young aspiring talents – that’s the spirit of our Institute and our Colloquium.
This is why I am particularly glad and grateful that you have elected me for another term as President. Together with you, the Officers and the Board of Directors, I am ready to lead IISL into the 2020s. While I focussed during my first term on extending the geographic and thematic scope of the Institute, I intend to devote this new term to give IISL an updated look and to increase its concrete and direct usefulness for its membership.
It is with enthusiasm that I will follow this path together with you as parts of our most wonderful flourishing IISL!