Fred Watson says he has spent so many years working in large observatory domes that he has started to look like one.
He is the Australian Government’s first Astronomer-at-Large, having worked at both of Britain’s Royal Observatories before joining the Australian Astronomical Observatory as Astronomer-in-Charge in 1995.
Recognised internationally for helping to pioneer the use of fibre optics in astronomy during the 1980s, Fred is best known today for his radio and TV broadcasts, books, music, dark-sky advocacy and co-hosting the Space Nuts podcast.
Fred has adjunct professorships in six Australian universities, and his awards and honours include the Eureka Prize for Promoting Understanding of Science in 2006 and an honorary Doctor of Science from Macquarie University in 2022.
In January 2010, he was made a Member of the Order of Australia for service to astronomy. A unique claim to fame is that Fred is the only Australian astronomer to have received an APRA music award.
He also has an asteroid named after him (5691 Fredwatson), but says that if it hits the Earth, it won't be his fault.
Marco Aliberti works as a Senior Research Fellow at the European Space Policy Institute (ESPI) in Vienna, a pan-European think-tank providing decision-makers with an informed view on short to long-term issues relevant to the European space policy.
Since 2020, he is also a research consultant at the Space Power and Policy Applied Research Consortium (SPPARC) established by Flinders University, Adelaide. In this capacity, he has carried out and published a number of research projects in the areas of access to space and human spaceflight, governance and International Relations of space, and Asia's space programmes, particularly those of China, Japan and India.
He is the author of five books published by Springer and more than two dozen policy papers, conference proceedings and public reports on space policy matters. Prior to joining ESPI in 2012, he has experience in the private sector.