The U.S.-Latin America space cooperation equation
Serna, Angel E.
Moltz, James Clay
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This thesis investigates why U.S. space cooperation efforts with Latin American countries have decreased over the past three decades. This thesis also addresses the following questions: Is the reduced number of U.S.–Latin American space cooperation projects an indication of a loss of U.S. regional influence? Is there an indication of a shift in the partner of choice? If so, what are the factors alienating the U.S. and preventing the establishment of cooperative space efforts, and what can be done about them? This thesis argues that U.S.-Latin American space cooperation has decreased due to the increased availability of providers, the maturing domestic space sectors, and the committed drive toward technological independence. Latin American countries are pursuing space capabilities mainly to support socio-economic development efforts. Their specific resource constraints motivate them to pursue cooperative projects. The increasing availability of providers allows for greater flexibility, and Latin American countries chose engagements that best suit their requirements. Therefore, the smaller number of cooperative U.S.–Latin American space projects is not an indication of a loss of U.S. regional influence but instead of a competitive market with pragmatic consumer base. Thus, the United States is not being alienated but challenged to engage on equitable terms.
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