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Congratulations to Kristina – a rising star in space!


SPRINT's Kristina Tamane wins at British Interplanetary Society’s inaugural NextGen Network Rising Stars In Space Award 2021

SPRINT Innovation Adviser and Space Business Development Executive at the University of Edinburgh, Kristina Tamane, was recently recognised for her ‘excellence in the space community’ at the British Interplanetary Society’s inaugural NextGen Network Rising Stars In Space Award 2021.

The awards were held during World Space Week which was themed ‘Women in Space’ this year to celebrate the accomplishments and contributions of women to sciences and the space sector. It aims to inspire young women around the world to pursue STEM studies and take future careers in the space industry.

The NextGen Network Rising Stars In Space Award was open to women in the space community aged 18-35. Kristina and four other rising women, from scientists and engineers to artists and community volunteers, were chosen as winners.

Commenting on the award, Kristina said: “I am genuinely blown away to be nominated for this award and delighted to be recognised for the work we’re doing as a sector. This is incredible and I hope this award will inspire more girls and women to enter a career in space.”

We spoke to Kristina to get more of her thoughts on the award and the UK space sector…

How do you feel about winning the award?

“I was genuinely surprised to be nominated and it was so wonderful for colleagues to put me forward. It was particularly exciting to find out that the nomination came partially from Scottish Space Leadership Council and incredible colleagues in Spire and AstroAgency!”

To what do you attribute your award win?

“I’ve gone from a zero profile to be relatively well-known in the space sector within three years. I’ve led on diversity and inclusivity, encouraging the benefits of collaboration and interconnection,
with a focus on getting the whole sector to come together. I would imagine this contributed to the nomination.”

How has your background and experience shaped your current role and specialisms?

“I’ve had a wide range of roles including project management, careers/employability advice, event management, continuous improvement and organisational change, in both the public and private sectors. This diverse experience has enabled me to develop a wide variety of skills and I just love solving problems!”

From your perspective, how has SPRINT positively influenced and provided opportunities for space-related businesses?

“SPRINT delivers a unique funding stream for middle ground businesses – start ups and early stage SMEs – to support them as they grow their businesses in space. The programme works differently with the university sector, enabling businesses to collaborate with the most appropriate university. As we work in a UK network, businesses get access to expertise from different geographical areas which makes the programme unique in the space sector. I’ve enjoyed being a part of this programme and making those connections to grow space businesses nationally.”

What is your vision for the UK space sector?

“As the Environmental Task Force Co-chair, I would say that our main aim has to be to establish the UK space sector as the most sustainable and green sector in the world. This will allow for a different kind of investment and growth, with particularly focused activity in Scotland.”

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