The SPACEPOL Corporation is a Canadian-controlled international corporation specializing in national innovation policy development, strategic intelligence and high-knowledge product development. The publishing arm of the corporation also produces peer-reviewed academic literature based upon the research and development activities carried out at SPACEPOL. The SPACEPOL Corporation was incorporated and its first shareholders' meeting held at Quebec City, Quebec, Canada in 2008. The current Governor (President and CEO) of the corporation is Gunnar K. A. Njalsson who was elected by the shareholders in 2008. SPACEPOL maintains an official representation to Argentina and the Nordic countries.
The Cybernetwork 1994-2005
Already at the beginning of the 1990s social science and legal research activities were experiencing severe cutbacks in funding in many western countries. The new ideology of the Information Society had begun to take form and this included to a large extent the increased weight and prestige of the technology sector as opposed to the general research community. While many academics lamented the shift in public resources and the employment instability this entailed, few if any research communities took any concrete action to address this process of rapid change in academia.
By the mid 1990s it was becoming increasingly clear that traditional responses and pleas for funding from non-technical academic institutions would not suffice and that new methods of adaptation and response were needed. The visibility and utility of important research fields needed to be addressed and the value of the strategic knowledge of international scholars reconsidered in a commercial light.
Motivation and Founders
Gunnar K. A. Njalsson a University of Helsinki student of Public Administration and Economics began in 1994 to collect survey data for a thesis relating to Space Law from officers of various space agencies including the European Space Agency online. The resulting benefits and extensive development of new communication methods inspired what was later to become an official cybernetwork dedicated to the subjects of Space Law and Public Technology Policy.
On 30th October 1998 Spacepol International Research Network for Space Law and IT Policy was officially inaugurated as the world's first research network in cyberspace for these fields. The original network was run from a site at the University of Helsinki in Finland. Content was provided in Swedish, English, Finnish and Norwegian- languages which the founder spoke fluently. Upon a trial period and having received extensive feedback from members of the scientific community including members of the Canadian Political Science Association, Spacepol was fully functional providing information on the research objectives, results and publications of many central scholars in these fields. Due to the simplicity of the site and the extent of information provided in several languages Spacepol soon became the central resource for Space Law and Technology Policy. By 2000, the site was receiving over 900 visits per day from nearly every country with internet access.
The network founder, Gunnar K. A. Njålsson believed that providing a single portal enabling access to all central scholars and the latest research results for the entire field would better further cooperation amongst researchers, provide rapid access for those wishing to utilise current research, showcase the progress and utility of the research fields and provide a forum in which to create efficient research consortia while avoiding redundancies.
Developments during the New Millennium
By 2000 Spacepol had received most international attention and acclaim from outside of Finland and Scandinavia. Attempts to create a centre of excellence out of the network and base it in Finland were shown little interest by Finnish and Norwegian research communities. At the same time, American, Canadian and British scholars were increasingly calling for the transformation of Spacepol into a concrete organisation or research institute to be based in one of these countries.
Largely as a result of the demographic structure and geographical location of regular users and of the network membership, the Spacepol site was relocated to the United Kingdom in 2001 and all information provided in English. Spacepol continued to provide refereed links to most accredited institutions and projects for the two fields, information on latest research results and an information service to scholars and the international public. By 2002 founder Njålsson had received several awards of recognition for the creation of such a cybernetwork and plans for revamping the site were commenced.
Spacepol the Canadian Company 2005-2008
A Canadian-Finnish Enterprise
The conversion of Spacepol from a volunteer-maintained information resource and cybernetwork in 2005 to a Quebec-registered commercial enterprise was largely a result of the strategic knowledge of the fields built up over time by Gunnar K. A. Njålsson and Spacepol fellow volunteers. Those involved became increasingly aware that their knowledge and abilities were not easily replicated in other sectors of the aerospace and government industries. The aerospace industry was readily capable of recruiting engineers, but had hardly begun to recruit or knew how to locate international legal expertise in outer space affairs. This provided Spacepol with a strategic market niche. As little was occurring by way of economic adaptation current challenges in academia, the Spacepol founder espoused a policy of gradual and strategic commercialisation of expertise and knowledge within the new fields of Space Law and Public Technology Policy.
In March 2005, Spacepol International Research Network for Space Law and IT Policy officially became Spacepol Éditeurs Universitaires Academic Publishers an academic publisher for the fields of Space Law and Public Technology Policy. Many of the information features of the former academic network were retained while ensuring that research and consulting services are provided at market rates based upon their strategic value. Literature resulting from the research activities of the enterprise is published and distributed by Spacepol in North America, South America and Europe.
Spacepol has received some public attention based upon a well-known fact that all of its current personnel have IQs of 132 or more. This was revealed when a company spokesman confirmed that every person employed by the enterprise is either a member of Mensa or of the International High IQ Society. The company maintains that high IQ or membership in a high IQ society has never been a criterium for employment; but is rather an amusing coincidence.
After the incorporation of The SPACEPOL Corporation, SPACEPOL removed most of its operations from Finland and became Canadian-controlled.
Company Philosophy and Slogan
Originally founded to promote the fields of Space Law and Public Technology Policy Analysis, a philosophy of offensive adaptation on the part of strategic branches of academia underlies the activities of the former non-commercial research network and the international company Spacepol has evolved into. In addition, publisher and consulting house Spacepol has maintained an aggressive policy of control over all academic literature resulting from the research activities of the former network and current enterprise.
The company slogan is: "Responding to Tomorrow Today", usually written in black with the word "Today" underlined in royal blue.
Spacepol Government Policy Consulting
Spacepol Government Policy Consulting is the consulting arm of the international company Spacepol Éditeurs Universitaires Academic Publishers Co formed in 2005. The company operates in Canada and the European Union and serves the aerospace and government industries.
Spacepol Éditeurs Universitaires Academic Publishers
Spacepol Éditeurs Universitaires Academic Publishers is a Quebec City academic publishing company for the fields of Space Law and technology policy analysis. The publishing arm has operations in Espoo, Finland and Canada and was formed from Spacepol, a previous non-commercial research network in 2005.
SPNW Research Network NewsWire
SPNW Research Network NewsWire is an accredited newswire service producing academic and research-related news and investigative reports. Writers must be journalists in good standing belonging to a North American or South American journalists' association. The SPNW Research Network NewsWire service has produced several investigations into academic fraud or irregularities in connection with its volunteer journalism project Svenskfinland granskas 2008. These reports focused on data protection issues and fraudulent academic practices in Finland.
The SPACEPOL Corporation is administered by a President and CEO commonly referred to as a Governor and a Board of Directors referred to as the Praesidium. The members of the Board or Praesidium are referred to as councillors. In accordance with the Canadian Business Corporations Act, these governing bodies receive their authority from the Annual Meeting of Corporate Shareholders.
The corporate articles of incorporation and by-laws contain stipulations preventing The SPACEPOL Corporation from doing business with any person or entity deemed to be sympathetic to or involved in international terrorism or in any jurisdication which in practice does not support and protect the principles of private ownership and freedom of conscience. (The Anti-terrorism Clause).
- Marquis Who's Who in the World. New Providence, NJ. 2005.
- The Spacepol Site. Québec, QC. 2006.
- "Winds of Change for Spacepol Website", SPNW NewsWire. Espoo, Finland. 2005.
- European Commission. "European Union Publisher's Forum". 2006.
- "Spacepol". Authority Records Database. Library of Congress, Washington D.C. 2005.
- Canadian Space Directory. Canadian Space Agency (CSA), Quebec, Canada. 2006.
- Spacepol Corporate Information
- Globally Famous Spacepol Products
- Master Catalogue of Structured Spacepol Lectures and Courses 2007-2008
- Technological Revolution as Political Coup d'etat Textbook on Technology Policy Analysis