The Earth and Space Foundation has an awesome but low funded award program to “funds expeditions that either use Earth’s resources and environments to help us understand other worlds and assist in the exploration of space or expeditions that use space technology and data to help us understand and care for the Earth’s environment”. It brings up a fun discussion point that I have had with many geographers. Is there still a need for Earth expiditions? There must be because there is Expidition Quest, an online community of explorers and adventurers chock full of them. Plus I know several hardy and adventuresome people who have gone to Antartica as part of NSF antartic sciences. Which not many people know is open to any U.S. citizen.
Other questions we have discussed included, “You know they are going to need interstellar geospatial specialists to go into space, would you go? Would you still go if you knew you wouldn’t come back? Has the geospatial field progressed far enough to make this possible?” I am just waiting for the awesome movie to come out based on the first interstellar cartographers. You know someone always has to be first in uncharted territory. or is that going to be done by technology from now on? Interstellar studies is already an expanding field.