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Outer space and neo-colonial injustice: Distributive justice and the continuous scramble for dominium

Sutch, Peter and Roberts, Peri 2019. Outer space and neo-colonial injustice: Distributive justice and the continuous scramble for dominium. International Journal of Social Economics 46 (11) , pp. 1291-1304. 10.1108/IJSE-03-2019-0152

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Purpose: Recent developments in US rhetoric and policy advocating the militarisation and marketisation of outer space challenge the global commons values and regimes that developed partly in response to decolonisation. These regimes embodied aspirations to post-colonial distributive justice, as well as to international management for peaceful purposes. The purpose of this paper is to argue that global commons values should be defended against these challenges in order to avoid the risk of exporting colonial legacies of injustice into outer space. Design/methodology/approach: This paper is an exercise in normative International Political Theory and so develops normative arguments by drawing on approaches in political theory and international law. Findings: This paper demonstrates that the commons values endorsed in the aftermath of colonialism retain their relevance in a global politics that remains structured by post-colonial power relations. This paper also demonstrates that these commons values have evolved and found expression in central elements of international law, persisting as resources to be drawn on in normative argument. Originality/value: This study places recent moves to assert US hegemony in space in the context of persistent post-colonial power relations and develops novel arguments in renewed support of commons values.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Department of Politics and International Relations (POLIR)
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Publisher: Emerald
ISSN: 0306-8293
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 16 May 2019
Date of Acceptance: 8 May 2019
Last Modified: 20 Jan 2021 10:15

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