Dr. Robert C. Harding publishes new book on space programs in developing countries

Tue, 09/11/2012 - 9:45am

Mobile, Ala. — Robert C. Harding, Ph.D., associate professor and chair of the political science department at Spring Hill College, has authored his fourth book, “Space Policy in Developing Countries: The Search for Security and Development on the Final Frontier,” published by Routledge Publishing.

The book analyzes the rationale and history of space programs in countries of the developing world.

Space was at one time the sole domain of the wealthiest developed countries. However, the last couple of decades of the twentieth century and the first decade of the twenty-first century have witnessed the number of countries with state-supported space programs blossom. Today, more than 25 developing states, including the rapidly emerging economic powers of Brazil (seventh-largest), China (second-largest), and India (fourth-largest), possess active national space programs with already proven independent launch capability or concrete plans to achieve it soon.

This work places these programs within the context of international relations theory and foreign policy analysis. Harding categorizes each space program into tiers of development based not only on the level of technology utilized, but on how each fits within the country’s overall national security and/or development policies.

Harding’s principal research interests are space policy, international security, and Latin American politics. He is the author of “Military Foundations of Panamanian Politics,” “The History of Panama” and scholarly articles in a number of refereed journals, including “Air & Space Power Journal.”