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Abstract: Around the turn of the millennium, the first paper was published that mentioned the word 'exopolitics. Since then many people - authors, activists, et. al. - have adopted the term. Over the years, different definitions of 'exopolitics' emerged, and as a result of this, the exact meaning of the term got blurred. In October 2009 a number of people involved in exopolitics organised some brainstorming sessions in which the different meanings and usages of the word 'exopolitics' were explored and mapped. This led to a new definition of Exopolitics.

 

About a decade ago, Alfred Webre first launched the word 'exopolitics.' Since then many people - authors, activists, et. al. - have adopted the term. Over the years, different definitions of 'exopolitics' emerged, and as a result of this, the exact meaning of the term got blurred.

Alfred Webre, e.g., defined it as "the study of political process and governance in interstellar society."

Michael Salla gave two complementary definitions: a) "Exopolitics is the study of the key individuals, institutions and political processes associated with extraterrestrial life." b) "Exopolitics is the study of the political implications of the extraterrestrial presence on Earth."

Steve Basset used the term 'exopolitics' in 4 different meanings:
1. the art or science of government as concerned with guiding or influencing governmental policy toward extraterrestrial-related phenomena and extraterrestrial beings.
2. exopolitical actions, practices, or policies.
3. the exopolitical opinions or sympathies of a person.
4. the total complex of relations between the human race and non-human, intelligent beings.

The Wiktionary defined 'exopolitics' as "the art or science of government as concerned with creating or influencing policy toward extraterrestrial phenomena and extraterrestrial beings."

Others used the term in an even wider meaning and spoke of 'exopolitics' as a new paradigm.

In October 2009 a number of people involved in exopolitics organised some brainstorming sessions in which the different meanings and usages of the word 'exopolitics' were explored and mapped. [The follow people participated in the brainstorming sessions: Come Carpentier (India); Neil Gould (Hong Kong); Paola Harris, M.Ed.(USA/Italy); Robert Fleischer (Germany); Manuel Lamiroy, Lic. Juris (South Africa); Pepón Jover del Pozo, M.Sc. (Spain); Michael Salla, Ph.D. (USA/Australia); Victor Viggiani, M.Ed. (Canada)].

It became clear that 'exopolitics' was being used in 3 distinct meanings:

  1. as a scientific discipline
  2. as a worldwide movement
  3. as a new paradigm

What all meanings have in common, is that they all deal with the implications of extraterrestrial life.

 

Concept map of the meanings of exopolitics

 

So, the nutshell version is that exopolitics deals with the implications of extraterrestrial life.

Using this concept map as a basis, consensus was reached on a formal and an informal definition.

Informal definition:

Exopolitics is the convergence of a new interdisciplinary science, an international political movement and a new paradigm, which all deal with the wide range of implications of extraterrestrial life.

Formal definition:

Exopolitics is an interdisciplinary scientific field, with its roots in the political sciences, that focuses on research, education and public policy with regard to the actors, institutions and processes, associated with extraterrestrial life, as well as the wide range of implications this entails through public advocacy and newly emerging paradigms.

 

This article was first published on 5 November 2009, at http://news.exopoliticssouthafrica.org/index.php/exo-articles/46-exopolitics-definition.