Giulio Boccaletti is a renowned expert in water and natural resources management with over 25 years of experience working with governments, NGOs, and private sector companies. His engaging and thought-provoking speeches offer unique insights into the complex challenges facing our planet and inspire audiences to take action towards a more sustainable future.

For the last 20 years, Giulio Boccaletti's work has been at the intersection of geophysical and ecological science, public policy and business strategy, water security and our relationship with Earth's climate. He is the Scientific Director of the Euro-Mediterranean Center on Climate Change.

Giulio started out as a scientist, working on climate dynamics and physical oceanography at Bologna University. He obtained his PhD at Princeton University, where he was a NASA Earth Systems Science Fellow, and went on to MIT, where he worked on turbulence, instability theory and the large scale circulation of the ocean.

He then joined global consultancy McKinsey & Company as a partner, one of the leaders of its Sustainability and Resource Productivity practice, and the co-founder of its Water practice. 

​While at McKinsey he served dozens of private, not for profit, and public sector institutions and clients, across multiple industries, from health to finance. He worked in a dozen countries, from Ethiopia, South Africa and Jordan to India, China, the UK, and the US. During his time at the Firm, he also produced several public reports on key sustainability issues, including carbon and water security strategies for countries, the role of ICT sector in the climate transition, the economics of climate adaptation, and the economics of water security.

​After his experience in the private sector, Giulio joined the Nature Conservancy, one of the largest conservation organisations in the world, first as its Global Managing Director for Water, then as its Chief Strategy Officer. During his time there he was responsible for the strategy processes of the 4,000 people working at TNC in over 40 countries and for several key strategic initiatives, including its water funds programmes, its program on water markets, and its work on hydropower.

He currently serves as the Scientific Director of the Euro-Mediterranean Center on Climate Change, where he directs the largest Italian research institution devoted to the science and economics of climate change. He teaches a class on strategy and sustainability at the Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment at Oxford University and is a senior advisor to the specialist consulting firm SystemIQ. He is also the co-founder of the venture-backed tech company, Chloris Geospatial.

Giulio's book Water: A Biography, a history of the relationship between society and water, was released by Pantheon Books in September 2021. The Economist rated it one of the best books of that year. It has been translated into 9 languages, and was released as a paperback in 2022.

Speech topics

The Future of Water Security

People's relationship with water, the most powerful agent of the climate system on the planet, has guided the trajectory of civilization over the long arc of history. The struggle with floods, droughts, storms has shaped not just human geography but its institutions. As climate change shifts water conditions on the planet, this engaging talk will describe the profound choices before us: businesses, organizations, and society at large will have to confront both existential threats and unprecedented opportunities to rethink our relationship to Earth.


Water: A Biography

Writing with authority and brio, Giulio Boc­caletti shrewdly combines environmental and social history, beginning with the earliest civ­ilizations of sedentary farmers on the banks of the Nile, the Tigris, and the Euphrates Rivers. 

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