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  • Building Foundations for International Collaboration through Educational Outreach Initiatives

    Paper number



    Mr. Carlos Fontanot, United States, NASA


    Mr. Erik Lopez, United States


    Mr. Juan Lopez, United States, NASA


    Ms. Ana Olvera, Mexico, Agencia Espacial Mexicana (AEM)


    Mr. Guillermo Castro, Mexico, Agencia Espacial Mexicana (AEM)


    Ms. Maria Jose Vinas, United States, NASA Headquarters



    As human space exploration pursues journeying to the Moon and Mars, international and intercultural collaboration is key for the success of such ambitious goals. Since 2015, NASA’s Johnson Space Center (JSC) Hispanic Employee Resource Group (HERG) has established relationships and outreach events with emerging space organizations in Latin America. Partnerships emerged between NASA, the Mexican Space Agency (aka AEM), and Mexico’s National Council for Science and Technology (aka CONACYT) with educational and public outreach as a common goal. Such efforts align with strategic goals to empower the next generation of innovators and explorers, and to champion the development of space exploration capabilities. These partnerships have resulted in several collaborative projects:
    1.	The NASA Hispanic Engagement Campaign for the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics. 
    2.	Yearly support of Mexico’s CONACYT Week of Science and Technology in Mexico City.
    3.	Espacio a Tierra, a weekly summary produced originally in English by Public Affairs at NASA JSC and translated into Spanish. This program summarizes the activities on board the International Space Station. The success of this initiative can be used as a blueprint for future partnerships. 
    Purpose and Methodology
    This paper will discuss how to further develop partnerships to introduce the Spanish speaking population to science, aeronautics, space technology, research and development through television, webcasts and social media, following proven methods used with Espacio a Tierra. The authors will share accomplishments, challenges, and lessons learned to build foundations for international collaboration to ignite research and innovation, and propel human space exploration. The methodology to be applied is through Space Act Agreements leveraging existing outreach materials and programs, and translate them into Spanish for the benefit of students, educational organizations and the public in general. 
    In collaboration with the Latin American Educational and Cultural Television Association, the plan is to apply the same model in other regions and countries to create a Latin-American network of language translation and diffusion of science and space technology content targeting emerging countries. 
    Results and conclusions
    Since January 2017, more than 100 episodes of Espacio a Tierra have been produced and are available through NASA web pages, YouTube and other outlets. Currently, these programs are broadcast live through Canal de Televisión Satelital Iberoamericano and the Edusat Network to 22 countries that include Latin America, Spain, Portugal and Andorra, with a potential audience of 58 million viewers.
    Abstract document


    Manuscript document

    IAC-19,E1,6,6,x54835.pdf (🔒 authorized access only).

    To get the manuscript, please contact IAF Secretariat.