UK International Partnership Programme wins Better Satellite World Award

Stephen Kuper

The UK Space Agency’s International Partnership Programme, which uses satellite-enabled technology to tackle global challenges, has received recognition from the Space & Satellite Professionals International in the fifth annual Better Satellite World Awards.

UK International Partnership Programme wins Better Satellite World Award
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IPP is an annual £30 million ($56.4 million) space development program established in 2016. It focuses on utilising the UK space sector’s research and innovation capabilities to deliver sustainable economic and societal benefits to emerging and developing economies around the world.

The Better Satellite World Campaign, run by SSPI, works with partner associations and dozens of supporting companies around the world to change the global conversation about satellites and promote their influence on the economy, business and societies everywhere.

Dr Graham Turnock, Chief Executive of the UK Space Agency, said, “Our International Partnership Programme is the world’s largest space programme for sustainable development, and it’s doing fantastic work delivering innovative solutions to problems all over the globe.”


The selection of the recipients for the Better Satellite World Awards was made by an international jury consisting of a broad cross-section of industry thought leaders and distinguished professionals.

“We are proud of the difference IPP makes to the lives of those in developing and emerging countries while supporting jobs in the UK, and I am delighted this has been recognised by SSPI,” Dr Turnock added. 

Other winning recipients include Geeks Without Frontiers, which aims to bring broadband connectivity to an estimated 3.5 billion people, and BIRDS Satellite Project, which trains graduate students from developing countries in using systems engineering.

The recipients will be honoured at the Better Satellite World Awards Dinner on 2 December in London.


IPP uses the UK space sector’s research and innovation strengths to deliver a sustainable, economic or societal benefit to undeveloped nations and developing economies. IPP is funded from the BEIS Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF).

As GCRF forms part of the UK’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) ring-fenced budget, IPP is required to be fully ODA compliant and will be delivered in line with the UN sustainability goals.

IPP seeks to maximise the practical impact on the lives of those living in developing countries by partnering with developing countries to use space solutions to solve their specific development challenges, and in doing so increase their capacity.

As a secondary objective, IPP will contribute to the continued strength of the UK’s space sector, building on the unique strengths that the sector has in terms of services and technology to deliver the aid objectives. The projects within IPP span a whole range of themes: including reducing deforestation, disaster response, land-use monitoring, reducing maritime problems and deploying renewable energy.

The UK Space Agency will provide grants of between 50-100 per cent (depending on the size and type of establishment) for organisations to run projects over the course of the five-year program that will provide practical and measurable effects to end-users in developing countries. 

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