Your Company Needs a Space Strategy. Now.

by Matthew Weinzierl, Prithwiraj (Raj) Choudhury, Tarun Khanna, Alan MacCormack, and Brendan Rosseau

IN THE EARLY 2000S, AS THE U.S. SPACE SHUTTLE PROGRAM was winding down, the government’s policy on space moved away from its model of flowing all money and decisions through NASA and the Department of Defense. Instead, it began to allow privately funded companies to compete for public-sector contracts. The Commercial Orbital Transportation Services program (commonly known as COTS) and its successors, for example, gave private companies fixed-price contracts, rather than the cost-plus contracts typically used in the space sector, to provide services to resupply the International Space Station.

That change ...

Get HBR's 10 Must Reads 2024 now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience books, live events, courses curated by job role, and more from O’Reilly and nearly 200 top publishers.