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The Earth’s natural systems are under increasing pressure. Their vulnerability has reached a broad public attention. Decision makers call for useful information to monitor ecosystems and critical infrastructure and assess security-relevant situations. Such information has a huge impact on societies. These needs can be addressed using spaceborne optical systems that characterize natural and human-induced systems and processes, such as air quality, on local, regional and global scales. Scattering and reflection of light provide fingerprints, which can be used for agriculture, forestry, infrastructure and disaster monitoring and object tracking. Laser satellite communication will increase data transmission capacity with a massive commercial impact. The Netherlands has an excellent international reputation in the development and usage of optical systems. The Tropomi instrument maps atmospheric gases to an unprecedented resolution. An entire value chain supports the up- and down-stream on national and European level. The program Focus from Space will link user needs to critical technology by further developing space optics to concrete products, applications and systems. It will do that following a multi-application cross-domain approach, focusing on remote sensing and telecommunication and enabling spin-in and spin-out of non-space players, such as aviation and information technology. Research on computational imaging, on-chip adaptive optics, noiseless single photon detectors and metasurfaces will contribute to the next generation of compact optical systems with high performance standards at low cost. This will be achieved by a multi-disciplinary team that integrates new optical fabrication, calibration, systems engineering, machine learning, data processing and control methodologies. The research topics are: – Optics for monitoring; – Optics for communication; – Innovative Optics within a System Focus from Space will increase the international competitiveness of Dutch companies and strengthen the knowledge sector on space optics and beyond. With its strong technological level and its creativity, it will address public, business and governmental needs alike.