The Weaponization of Outer Space: Ethical and Legal Boundaries

When: Thursday, April 5, 2018

to Saturday, April 7, 2018

Where: University of Pennsylvania Law School

Historically, strategic restraint has been the dominant approach among space faring nations, all of whom understood that continued access to and use of space required holding back on any threats or activities which might jeopardize the status quo of peace in space. However, recently there has been a discernible shift in international rhetoric towards more offensive capabilities in space. China, Russia, and the United States have all held various tests in space in recent years, leading to speculation that they all possess anti-satellite weapon (ASAT) capabilities.

SWF was a cosponsor of the Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law's (CERL) conference called, “Securing Space: Ethical Governance for Outer Space Security.” The conference brought together approximately 40 top-tier experts, including faculty members of the University of Pennsylvania, along with specialist practitioners and global experts from diverse fields, including academia, public policy, the aerospace industry, and national security.

The conference facilitated a high-level exchange of views on the pressing ethical, legal, and policy issues arising out of the potential of armed conflict in that domain. 

This invitation-only event was coordinated by CERL. Any questions can be directed to Washington Office Director Victoria Samson at

Event Materials

Last updated on April 17, 2018