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Exopolitics: Discipline of Choice for Public Policy Issues Concerning Extraterrestrial Life
by Michael E. Salla, Ph.D

Posted: 18:50 November 23, 2007

There is growing debate concerning ‘exopolitics’, which is oriented towards public policy issues concerning extraterrestrial life; and its relationship to UFOlogy, which primarily concerns itself with evidence concerning unidentified flying objects (UFOs). Supporters of exopolitics largely accept that the existence of extraterrestrial life has been abundantly demonstrated by a vast pool of evidence over the last sixty years provided by eyewitnesses, whistleblowers, scientists, ‘experiencers’ and leaked government documents. Supporters of exopolitics claim it is now time to focus on public policy aspects of this evidence, rather than maintain a myopic focus on proving to perennial skeptics that UFOs are real and a legitimate focus on scientific study. Indeed, exopolitics supporters believe that much of this skepticism is unwarranted and can be traced to the debunking recommended by the CIA appointed Robertson Panel in 1953. The panel delivered a report, the Durant Report, that recommended ridiculing the ‘flying saucer’ phenomenon and the possibility of extraterrestrial life, for national security reasons.

Many individuals are still trying to grasp what exopolitics is all about, and many ‘UFOlogists’ remain highly critical of exopolitics as an emerging disciplinary approach to public policy issues concerning extraterrestrial life. UFOlogists still have difficulty grasping that exopolitics is the forerunner to a legitimate academic discipline that will soon be established in every major university. Critics of exopolitics often tend to focus on some of the pioneers of exopolitical thought in terms of their methods and ideas, rather than the identifying the merits of a scholarly approach to public policy issues concerning extraterrestrial life.

The present situation is some ways analogous to the 19th century where there was much debate on how to prepare individuals for studying public policy issues for careers in international diplomacy and public office. Historians at the time argued that efforts to establish the discipline of 'political science' was ill founded, since the best preparation for a life dealing with public policy issues was to read historical works by Arnold Toynbee, Herodotus, Thucydides, etc. Well, political science developed anyway as an academic discipline out of the department of history since it fulfilled a functional need. The functional need was to better understand public policy issues and how individuals could be trained to professionally deal with these.

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