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Rosetta, a European success
12 November 2014. The successful landing of Philae on the comet 67P - a half billion kilometers away from the Earth - and the successful mission of Rosetta, are undoubtedly a success not only for the European Space Agency (ESA) but also a bit for the whole Europe, which is welcome in this moment of deep economic and political crisis. Probably, there could have been no better way to celebrate ESA's 50 years and to achieve a project launched in 1984 with the programme Horizon 2000. At the time, over 2000 European scientists set the priorities for the twenty years to come, among which there was the exploration of comets, explains the French astrophysicist Roger-Maurice Bonnet on Le Monde. The programme Rosetta, which was conceived to be financially autonomous, writes Bonnet,
constituted a revolution in the working methods both of the scientific community, and of the ESA and of its member states. The programme became a benchmark both for Europe and for the rest of the world. Once accepted, it gathered the interest of Americans, Japanese, Russians, and later on, of Chinese.
The key was in the small budget, which "required the scientists and entrepreneurs to think outside the box to find less expensive solutions while obtaining the same result, or better." The European scientific community "gathered around this programme, which ensured an unquestionable international standing, making of it an unavoidable high-level partner." The success of Rosetta and Philae demonstrate that when Europeans manage to overcome the limits of national interest to focus on a common objective, they can go far. Scientists managed to do this. Who knows if their leaders will take the example.
Our citizens' initiative demands "a EU special program of public investments for the production and financing of European public goods" such as research and innovation.
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Video: Alexis Tsipras, Florence, 16 November 2014
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|Video (IT | EN): Fausto Durante, CGIL, Ventotene 5 September 2014||News: Jef Florence, 3rd European week of action, Florence 17 November 2014.|
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