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Mark Presley
Honorary Fellow




  • PhD (King’s College London)
  • MPhil (University of Cambridge)
  • MBA (Open University)

A recently retired independent consultant with 30 years of experience in UK space operations and space policy. Operationally, I led missile warning and space surveillance operations at RAF Fylingdales and participated in joint UK/US space wargames. My operational expertise led to involvement in the early formation of MoD space strategy, working closely with UK space industry partners and academia in detailing future space concepts, capability, and structures. On secondment to the Cabinet Office, I took up a position in the Horizon Scanning Team with a focus on the role of space within the National Security Strategy and contributed to the early shaping of UK national space policy. My academic interests drew on this experience at the University of Cambridge on a Tedder Fellowship, studying for an MPhil in Politics and International Studies.

The role of national space policy in the pastiche of broader national interests, during my time in the Cabinet Office, sparked further research for my PhD at King’s College London, conducting a longitudinal analysis of US National Space Policy from 1960 to 2010 and the security, policy and economic drivers that shaped it. Most of this research was conducted part-time before establishing MAP Analytica Ltd, a company providing independent consultancy on space policy and strategy to clients in Government, industry, and academia. The most recent role being part of the senior leadership team of the National Space Partnership, contributing in a small way to the early shaping and implementation of the UK National Space Strategy.


Stepping back from space policy consultancy with MAP Analytica, my interests are focused on integrating space into the research interests of a broader field, in particular the Science and Technology Studies Unit with within the Sociology Department at the University of York. The aspiration is to contribute where possible on how scientific knowledge and space based technological systems and artefacts are embedded in the societies and cultures in which they are made, used and debated in the UK and internationally.

I continue to tutor with the Open University on a Senior Leaders MBA programme, supporting apprentices through their studies and advising on the application of the concepts, models and learning into their workplace.



Selected publications

Soft Power in Space: A Landscape Review of UK Influence, D Group Strategy International and King’s
Policy Institute, February 2022, with Dr Mark Hilborne

Towards a UK Space Surveillance Policy, King’s Policy Institute, August 2020, with Dr Mark Hilborne

Evidence to House of Commons Defence Committee on Space Surveillance, July 2021

Global Strategic Trends out to 2040, DCDC, 12 January 2010 (Contributory researcher and author)

Dr Mark Presley

Contact details

Dr Mark Presley
Honorary Fellow
Department of Sociology
University of York