No… it’s the Falcon 9 making its way back to the earth!”
Baby came back https://t.co/5FRhw3AT2b
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) February 19, 2017
Surprisingly, the number of telecommuting jobs in space research is increasing, with organizations slowly opening up their doors to the public. A job offer on Flexjobs, a reputed telecommute job site, posted an opening for a Senior Spacecraft Mechanical Engineer while the European Space Agency recruits freelance consultants for various short-term projects. Considering the wide range of academic disciplines and skillsets that make up a team in a space research organization, this is unsurprising. As outlined in this article, “The most frequently hired academic disciplines include aerospace engineering, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, software engineering but also astrophysics, astronomy, physics and mathematics. The successful candidates most usually have a master’s level degree. The remaining 20% often have advanced degrees in business administration or law.” In fact, some astronauts and space engineers even come from backgrounds as diverse as deep sea diving and gaming. Fast Company quotes Elon Musk as saying,
Given that it is not easily to build a team that comprises all the above expertise in one single organization, the freelance economy has huge scope here. It is only natural that these companies will look to marketplace websites to hire experts from diverse backgrounds for specific projects. Space organizations also hire science writers on a remote basis.
The future of research lies in collaboration between individuals, organizations and countries. Perhaps companies will follow NASA’s example and start working with individuals and teams without a location or policy restriction. In the process, they will also end up saving the time and cost it takes to recruit specialist talent in-house for only short-term projects. The bigger the collaboration, the brighter the innovation. Only then can we reach for the stars, literally!