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Italy’s space head forced out

Roberto Battiston, the ousted head of Italy’s space agency, has warned that his sudden departure could undermine the country’s work on the next European Space Agency summit.

Battiston announced on 6 November that he had been removed from the post of president of the Italian Space Agency (ASI). He told Research Professional that his removal could put at risk Italy’s gains in space R&D, as the country may not be properly represented at high-level meetings to organise European and international collaboration.

“In one year, there will be the ESA ministerial council, which will define the programme and the financial profile of ESA for the following three years,” said Battiston, who was involved in preparing two previous ESA councils. “Within the next six months, a lot of detailed work will be needed to prepare the position of Italy in time.”

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