ESA is an intergovernmental organisation with 22 Member States, created in 1975, with the mission to shape the development of Europe’s space capability and ensure that investment in space delivers benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world. Its wide range of activities cover areas such as launchers, science, robotic and human exploration, navigation, Earth observation, telecommunications, space safety and operations. In 2021, the ESA Agenda 2025 was published, outlining five priorities for the next year to realise ESA’s ambition for space in Europe. At the ESA Council at Ministerial level in November 2022, ESA’s budget was increased by 17% to a record of € 16.9bn, showing the strong support of Member States for space in Europe. Just recently, an independent High Level Advisory Group established at the request of ESA’s Council published a report on the future of human and robotic space exploration, calling for more investment in European space exploration. The next big milestone for ESA will be the Space Summit in Seville, Spain, which will take place in November 2023.
Simona currently works as DG Support and Member States Relations Officer in the Director General’s Cabinet at ESA’s headquarters in Paris. She has gained previous experience with ESA as a Swiss National Trainee in the Strategy and Development Office during which she was based at ESA’s ESRIN establishment in Frascati, Italy. Simona studied Political Science and Chemistry at the Universities of Bern and Zurich, Switzerland, as well as in Ljubljana, Slovenia.