Hello, I’m Bartu! My background is from Istanbul, I grew up in Brussels, studied in London, worked in Oxford, and I now live in the great city of New York.
I am a founding Director at the Center for Space Governance, a non-profit research organization dedicated to exploring current, emerging, and future issues in space policy. This year, I am studying International Affairs at Columbia University with a full scholarship to do research on space governance. I am also a Policy Officer at the Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC) and a guest lecturer at the University of Oxford for the MBA course on ‘Smart Space’. Previously I was at the European Space Agency (ESA), supporting companies which use space to improve life on Earth, as well as Seraphim Space, the world’s leading venture capital fund and accelerator for space technology.
As an undergraduate, I studied Law at University College London with a focus on the European Union and Environmental Law. For my dissertation, I wrote a paper on the topic of “EU Law’s Globalisation and its Effect on Post-Brexit Regulations”, in which I discuss the Brussels Effect and explore the emerging dynamics between sovereign nation-states and regulatory super-states within the context of environmental and technology policy. In 2016, I was accepted as an intercollegiate student in Philosophy at the London School of Economics, where I co-founded the AIBE Summit – Artificial Intelligence in Business & Ethics. Today, it is one of the largest non-profit conferences on AI in the world. After working in venture capital, I then went on to study an MSc in Technology Management, where I founded the UCL Space Society as an interdisciplinary community.
My main interests include space, nature, and philosophy. At the moment, I’m particularly interested in the interplay between the space economy and international security. We are now in the age of Space 4.0 – a multi-agent landscape where governments, businesses, and citizens are all getting involved in the expansion of our civilization. Within this context, the introduction of reusable rockets and small satellites is starting to open up access to space for thousands of people around the world. This not only allows us to witness the beauty of our planet from above, but also creates new opportunities like Earth observation for climate science, satellite constellations for global connectivity, and space stations for commercial activities. With this comes many challenges in space sustainability and security, which we will need to address through effective policy solutions.
In my free time I enjoy baseball, cycling, swimming, chess, photography, and music. One of my greatest passions are maps – whether it’s to visualize the complexity of the world, better understand a conceptual space, or connect all the thoughts in my mind, I think that mapping is one of the coolest ways to navigate systems and develop new insights. I also love thinking about the many dimensions of aesthetics, including the philosophy of beauty, abstract art, color theory, brand identity, architecture, interior design, and the way in which our physical environment shapes our experience of the world. When I’m not busy, I like going on long walks and taking photos which capture some of these ideas.
My life is mostly about exploring the big picture. In doing so, there are many fascinating questions to think about: What is the nature of reality? What are the laws that govern our physics? How does intelligence emerge from complexity? How can we transition into a global economy which achieves sustainable development? Which space governance frameworks will allow us to promote international coordination and peace? Are there any star systems out there with signs of astrobiology? How can we explain such elusive concepts as spacetime, consciousness, and love? Let’s find out!