Alex MacDonald is the Program Executive for Emerging Space within the Office of the Chief Technologist at NASA Headquarters. He is recognized as an expert on the economic history of American space exploration and contemporary private-sector space activities. He is the founding program executive of NASA’s Emerging Space Office which was established to conduct economic analysis on emerging commercial space companies. He is also an Executive Staff Specialist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a former research faculty member at Carnegie Mellon University, and has worked for the Universities Space Research Association while at NASA’s Ames Research Center where he worked on small satellite mission designs and served as the first research economist on staff. He was a Clarendon Scholar at the University of Oxford where he obtained his doctorate on the long-run economic history of American space exploration and was an inaugural TED Senior Fellow.