The German Aerospace Research Establishment is expected to merge with the German Space Agency (DARA) this month. The agencies had hoped to complete their fusion in 1996 but, says the German Aerospace Industries Association (BDLI), the plan has been held up by discussions over trimming the DARA workforce. The merger is being made in an attempt to cut costs and increase efficiency.

It is likely to mean that DARA's workforce of about 200 will be reduced by up to 30%, says the BDLI. Once the union is complete, the federal research ministry is to take greater responsibility for managing space research in a bid to avoid conflicts of interest within the new joint agency.

Source: Flight International