Giuseppe Viriglio has been appointed Director of European Union and Industrial Programmes (D/EUI). Made in June 2004, his appointment brings many years of experience in working at the highest level of the Italian space industry to ESA Telecom.
Born in Mondovi in the mountainous region of Cuneo, Italy, Giuseppe Viriglio, 57, was awarded a doctorate in aeronautical engineering from the Polytechnic of Turin. Most of his career has been spent within the aerospace industry where he has held increasingly senior positions.
At Aeritalia he led the Space System group and at Alenia Spazio the last position he held was CEO. Before joining ESA, he also served as Vice CEO of Galileo Industries. During the time spent working in Italian industry he worked on a number of European projects such as Spacelab and Columbus. In fact, Mr Viriglio has been involved, from the industry side, in most of the programmes he is now supervising from ESA.
When asked about his post as head of the new ESA Directorate Mr Viriglio said, "My Directorate is concerned with many of the essential elements on which the future of ESA will be based, and on which a European space policy that responds to user's needs will be built." The Directorate of European Union and Industrial Programmes has a decisive overview because of its wide scope - from telecom and navigation programmes to technology - and this will make it a key tool in supporting the industry through the difficulties currently being encountered.
"I am convinced that space can help solve major issues of European Union policy, strengthen Europe's independence through the promising sector of navigation and provide useful solutions to bridge the digital divide. D/EUI should be the reference for these new ventures."
The Directorate of European Union and Industrial Programmes covers the activities of the former Directorate of Applications which consisted of Telecom (with ARTES programmes and Artemis satellite) and Navigation (with EGNOS and Galileo programmes), with the addition of elements from the former Directorate of Industrial Matters and Technology: technology harmonisation and strategy, technology research and development, technology transfer and promotion programmes and industrial policy.