The Size & Health of the UK Space Industry 2014 – October 2014

Practice area: Competition & Antitrust | Exploration and Infrastructure | Space
Client: UK Space Agency
Published: 09 October, 2014
Keywords: modelling qualitative analysis quantitative analysis stakeholder surveys and consultations

Since 1992, the UK Space Agency has been periodically surveying the UK space sector, and places a great deal of emphasis on the results of this study as a measure of industry performance. The UK Space Agency contracted London Economics to conduct the 2014 edition, covering the years 2011/12 and 2012/13. The objectives of the study are to:

  • establish the industry’s general size and health;
  • inform the Government of the day and industry;
  • promote the UK space sector overseas;
  • provide an input into the formulation of UK space policy; and
  • track progress towards the policy objectives (e.g. The Space Innovation and Growth Strategy 2014-30).

The cornerstone of the research is a large-scale industrial survey of all organisations active in the UK who supply, or make use of, the space sector. The survey results are supplemented by additional targeted stakeholder consultations, desk-based research of publicly available data sources and a statistical model to estimate inputs for non-responding organisations.

In addition to the ‘traditional’ upstream and downstream space organisations and suppliers, the 2014 study seeks to include space-enabled value-added applications: activities of organisations that use space-enabled technologies (e.g. GPS positioning or tracking, satellite imagery, mapping, meteorological forecasts, satellite broadband, satellite broadcasting) in their operations, research and/or service provision in the UK. It is intended that this broadened definition of the industry will enable the Agency to capture all elements of the sector’s future growth, particularly with reference to space-enabled applications.

The primary output metrics are industry size (measured by turnover), economic contribution (direct gross value-added, and indirect and induced multiplier effects) and employment supported. Metrics are provided both in aggregate and broken down by segment and region. The (real) rate of change is analysed over time to track industry growth, as is R&D expenditure and intensity. Finally, industry expectations for growth in the forthcoming financial year are used to inform a forward-looking industry outlook.

The full report is confidential to the UK Space Agency, but an Executive Summary of the main findings is available above.