Dr James Kass started his career as a Nuclear Physicist, following on to Neurophysiology, Space Medicine, Human Spaceflight, Operations, Telemedicine, Applied Human Sciences, Group Dynamics, Knowledge Management, and Data Privacy.
This wide background allows him to analyse problems and investigate needs in a holistic manner taking into account the various complex inter-related issues often arising from very different domains that usually surround a situation. A broad system approach to designing solutions is facilitated by the wealth of experience garnered along his multi-disciplinary professional career.
Much of his work revolved around the domain of human spaceflight, where technical, scientific, and operational work involved delicate team work and complex negotiations across international teams and organizations as different players competed for limited resources on a space mission. He trained the first German, Dutch and Swiss astronauts, and worked with many others from Soyuz/Salyut and Apollo/Skylab to Space Shuttle, Spacelab, MIR, and the ISS. This work took him to space centres across Europe, Russia, Canada and the USA. He was also intimately involved in several long-duration isolation and space mission simulations.
His space career also encompassed satellite-related applications, as member of a DG Task Force to set up an Integrated Applications Promotion program for the European Space Agency (ESA). Telemedicine, eHealth and Knowledge Management are also part of his broad experience, spin-offs from space-related activities, where he worked with governmental and inter-governmental agencies (such as WHO, ITU, EC, ESA), and international working groups. He also served as expert for the EC in diverse fields, such as Telemedicine, Data Privacy and Conflict Resolution, thus garnering a broad scope of experience working with diverse types of institutions, in addition to academia and industry.
Having lived in six countries across three continents, he possesses a rich multi-cultural background and cross-cultural sensitivity. In fact his most recent academic work has been in the domain of applied psychology, a domain in which he held a professorship and still lectures. A recent area of his work is in the domain of Lessons Learned, having set up a Lessons Learned System at the European Space Agency and co-organized international conferences on this subject.
Dr Kass has authored numerous publications in scientific and technical journals, and made presentations at many international scientific symposia, congresses, workshops, and European Commission and national government working groups. He has lectured at the International Space University, Strasbourg & Barcelona, Concordia University, Montreal, and University College London. In recent years Dr Kass has frequently given key-note speeches and presentations at universities, trade fares, and industrial platforms, and to chair or co-chair international symposia, or sessions thereof.
Since 2012, Dr Kass has been a freelance consultant with his own companies in the Netherlands and Germany. He offers expertise in spaceflight technology, research and operations, satellite applications, knowledge management, data privacy, lessons learned, and advice on conflict resolution, and cross-cultural issues. Dr Kass would also like to use his broad and long experience in the international arena to help both in high-level policy advice and fieldwork in areas such as governance, effective aid, peace-making, education, training, and development.