SGAC is proud to present the November 2020 Member of the Month!

SGAC Member of the Month appreciation programme is continuing to recognise the hard work and dedication of outstanding volunteers, where their contributions make a real difference in their respective communities.

Continuing the amazing efforts various online events organizing teams have provided the network with, for November 2020, we are pleased to announce and congratulate The SGAC Team for The Mars Society’ City Design Competition – as Member of the Month!

The SGAC team was formed of 27 people from 19 countries, based on 10 different time zones, all geared up to deliver the entire research and final report in one month, June 2020!

More details about the competition can be found here: Mars City State Design Competition Announced – The Mars Society

We would like to invite you to read some of the team members’ reactions on their nomination as Members of the Month and their drive behind their participation in this great competition.

Impressions of being part of the team

“I’ve learned so much during this experience! It’s useless to tell you about the tons of scientific and technical information, that’s somehow “expected” working with so many skilled persons from different backgrounds, in addition to this I learned how to team work under stress, and how to do this remotely and in real-time, how to improve my active listening, how to be open-minded to unfamiliar ideas, I also learned the use of many digital tools and project management techniques during the process!

On top of all this, the almost daily contact and meetings with team members strengthened our relationship, the atmosphere was positive and encouraging.

I think that the best award from this project was the pluridisciplinary knowledge we gained and the friendships we developed!  

There is a motivational quote that helps me readjust my thinking everytime I’m overloaded or things get too confusing; it says:

“If it was easy to do, everybody would do it.” – Bob Parson

So if someone aims to achieve great things, he has to be prepared for all kinds of hardships and complications.

Finally many thanks to all SGAC members and leaders that were involved in the project, especially to Rochelle and Antony as I worked with them directly, and they are amazing in team management! And to Illaria for her permanent availability and advice all over the process.”

First impressions

“Though I feel honored about the award, it’s not really (and never was) about any award but about the amazing experience gained in the project. Awards are just a happy side effect. 

I was a part of the SMLS team, dealing with radiation protection of the city and sustainable systems.

From this experience I learned a lot about teamwork and project management, I learned to write concise and precise proposals and I learned a lot about space mission planning.”

As an inspiration phrase, Bruno would like to share with everyone: 

“Stars are not as far away as they used to be – let’s make our future together. It starts here – on our Pale Blue Dot.”

Impressions of being part of the team

“I am happy that our team efforts have paid off. I am thankful to SGAC for nominating us as well!

Being part of the Space Exploration group I basically worked in the technical aspects of the paper. Specifically, I had worked on probable settlement location identification and technical design of it.

Being part of this team and as part of this competition, I have explored much about Martian surface features and the various types of datasets available for Martian surface.”

As an inspiration quote, Ankita brings awareness of the importance of soft skills, such as team working, “Team Work makes the dream work. So let’s keep working”.

First thoughts on receiving this award

“The time spent with the team ideating, sharing ideas, brainstorming possibilities, and writing design concepts was in itself rewarding. Being part of the final top 10 was an added bonus, made even sweeter by the fact that we’ve joined as first time participants! So, to be recognized as part of SGAC’s Members of the Month is even more gratifying. 

The hard work that the team did together in a span of 30-intense days is a hard evidence of the global collaborative spirit within SGAC and I am overjoyed to be part of that team, and to receive this award in recognition of such spirit!

Role as part of the team

I was part of the team who designed the Economic Aspect of the city together with its Demographics. I personally had fun sharing my thoughts on the Timeline of Technology to establish basis for technological assumptions. My main role though was designing the city’s Framework for Social Welfare, economic strategies, looking into the potential demographics of the city, and my personal favourite, designing the city’s Socio-Cultural Element which can impact how the urban layout can be designed.

Learnings from this experience 

Waking up at 2 AM in my local timezone was the highlight of this project. But, it was a no brainer for me because I get up for something that throws around ideas, chats about space and so many things I am passionate about. These were incredible sources of lessons about cooperation in space, which can definitely be global, and about a lot of lessons on cross-team communication, team management, and how incredible ideas can be woven together to form a cohesive design!

Young or Adult we have to keep ourselves curious about this world, and this is Harlee’s personal mantra too:  “Stay curious!”

First impressions

“It’s an honour for our team to get this recognition from SGAC.

I was so happy to hear that our team was nominated the member of the month from SGAC! I humbly thank SGAC for this huge recognition.

I was a part of the SSPG subgroup which worked on the satellite systems for the Martian City.

It was a pleasure to work with diverse team members from different parts of the globe to work for a single goal.”

As an inspiration quote, Gracio would like to share with everyone: 

“The Earth is the cradle of humanity, but mankind cannot stay in the cradle forever.” by Konstantin Tsiolkovsky

First impressions

“Where to start (?) because I feel there’s more than ! 

I am so grateful to this great team who jumped on the challenge and delivered this unexpected result! 

Being among the 10 Finalists from 176 registrations it’s all thanks to the Space passion and spirit SGAC members hold within. 

Hashtag – Well Done Everyone! 😀

As the Membership Manager I get to read first hand all nominations received as part of the MoM programme, and it is with great pleasure to say that my joy came as soon as I read Harriet Brettle’s motivation for MCDC competition team, late Oct 2020. Thank You Harriet once again!

The competition required a Vision, a New vision of a New Society. Technically speaking this will certainly be accomplished, in the next 100 – 200 years, less or more, but it will come true.

Part of the Commercial Space PG team we needed to complement the great technical presented by our colleagues, but in a different way. We had to build The Vision of a Martian Sustainable society from the economical, demographical, social and governmental side. How we have done it was to carefully assess our current state, here on planet Earth, understand the challenges some of the great states and international companies are faced with, and conduct a different type of research where innovation and disruptive thinking were considered priority. This is because Martians, faced with harsh life conditions, will put their life on the line for the benefit of humankind. 

Some different lessons I would like to share are that, not only we did the research on all required topics as part of the competition, followed by the report writing and the final editorial challenge, but we all had to understand the importance of soft skills. We learned about team responsibility and work accountability, sharing ideas, report presentation, and, the most important of all, encouragement. Empowering or encouraging team members isn’t easy, but as soon it is laid out in the conversation, as soon as people hear more often “Thank You, Well Done, Great job”, they pursue the journey with much more enthusiasm. And this was the case for our successful report too! I would personally like to see it being done more often as part of our daily lives, wherever the situation arises. 

Therefore my thanks go to the great management and all team members dedication, and as well to my direct team colleagues, members of CSPG, Chaitanya, Harlee and Aleksandar, as they’ve joined SGAC as part of this experience.. and what a way to start volunteering!

We will soon be inviting everyone to read our report, making it available on the SGAC website. As a bonus for those who’d like to read the first 20 selected and visionary papers, The Mars Society will issue a new publication IN 2021 where our report will be called, “The Design of City States on Mars, a Vision from SGAC”.

Motivation for the SGAC Team for The Mars Society’ City Design Competition as Member of the Month November 2020

Harriet Brettle
SGAC Co-Chair

“The SGAC Mars City design team was selected as one of 10 finalists to the Mars City Design Competition, amongst 175 entrants!! The SGAC team was a large team of members across different SGAC Project Groups and they did an incredible job in this international competition!!”

Arnau Pons
SGAC Chair

“I would like to congratulate the SGAC Mars City design team for their hard work and innovative solutions presented at the Mars City State Design Competition. This has been an exciting cross-sectional effort encompassing multiple project groups and teams from SGAC. Let’s keep on working towards this goal of building future cities on Mars and beyond!!”