Gonzalo Delacamara

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Director of the IE Center for Water & Climate Adaptation, IE University, Gonzalo is a senior economist (with 28 years of experience) working worldwide (in 80+ countries: European Union, USA, Latin America and the Caribbean, Middle East, other countries in Africa, Central and South Asia, Australia...).


He specializes in the economic management of natural resources: water, climate, energy, air pollution, oceans, biological diversity and ecosystem services, etc., with emphasis on their complex links with economic and social development.


Gonzalo has been recently appointed (2023) by the European Commission as a member of the EU Platform on Sustainable Finance, responsible for the taxonomy of sustainable investments of the European Union in addition to the standardization of ESG metrics, the non-financial disclosure by companies, the analysis of flows in capital markets towards more sustainable patterns, the amendment of corporate social responsibility practices, the prevention of 'green washing' practices, etc.


Gonzalo has worked for more than two decades as an international consultant for multilateral organizations such as the European Commission, to which he is 'water policy advisor' (through its DG Environment), the European Parliament (to which he also advises on water policy change), a number of UN agencies and programs (UN Water, UNESCO, FAO, WHO-PAHO, UNDP, etc.), the World Bank Group (including its Water Resources Group 2030 initiative, but also the World Bank itself and the International Finance Corporation, IFC) or the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).


He is also a senior advisor and member of the OECD Water Governance Initiative, the world's most important policy forum in this field. Gonzalo is First Vice President of Water Europe, the former EU Water and Sanitation Technology Platform (WssTP), and Director on the Board of the International Desalination Association (IDA). He is also the first non-Dutch member of the External Scientific Advisory Council (ESAC) of KWR, a renowned water cycle research center in the Netherlands.\


Until 2021, he was also co-founder and Academic Director of the Water Economics Forum, a public debate initiative with Nobel Prize laureates in Economics and Peace, such as Professors George A. Akerlof, Jean Tirole and Mohan Munasinghe. He was also a senior faculty member at the Institute of Advanced Architecture of Catalonia (IaaC), which includes a digital design and fabrication laboratory linked to the MIT (FAB LAB BCN).


Gonzalo, a professor at the Universidad de Alcalá (UAH) for more than 15 years, is also a mentor in international programs to support female postdoctoral researchers in Germany (Association of Leibniz Institutes) or the United States (Techwomen), and the author of numerous books and scientific publications and articles, as well as a keynote speaker at global events.


Speaking Topics-


Sustainability and Economic Development


Discover how the sustainable management of natural resources drives economic development in this essential conference where global challenges and opportunities intertwine.


The Value of Sustainability: Towards a Responsible Future


Gonzalo explores the opportunities arising from sustainable investment activities, drawing on his knowledge of the EU Taxonomy of Sustainable Activities and its impact on financial markets and corporate organizations. Gonzalo analyzes how physical and transition risks translate into material financial risks.


Climate Change and Water Security: Global Challenges


Explore the critical challenges we face at different spatial and temporal scales in water management and climate change in this informative conference.


Biodiversity Economics: The Next Frontier


Gonzalo analyzes the societal and economic value of biological diversity, perhaps one of the most important challenges that is often overlooked in these times.


Adaptation to Climate Change


We conjugate climate change in the future by grammatical inertia, when in large areas of the planet, this change is a solid reality. Gonzalo shows the relevance of advancing in adaptation, the costs and benefits associated with it, and the synergies with efforts to mitigate impacts.


Sustainability: Managing Complexity


Gonzalo shows how a significant portion of global challenges related to sustainability (climate change, loss of biological diversity, desertification, pollution) should not be analyzed with a fragmented perspective.


Geoeconomics and Geopolitics of Energy: Towards a New World Order

Gonzalo analyzes the geopolitical and geoeconomic implications of the necessary energy transition for decarbonizing the economy in the fight against climate change.


Economics of Architecture: Advancing towards More Sustainable Cities


Gonzalo analyzes the sustainability of our urban development models and how the design of our cities has unequivocal implications for energy, water, and food security, as well as the climate emergency.


Governance of Natural Resources


The concept of governance or good governance tends to be presented in a somewhat limited context, essentially referring to transparency, accountability, citizen participation, and integrity. Gonzalo, despite recognizing the critical value of these factors, goes beyond, showing that good governance requires overcoming sectoral biases, redesigning incentives, advancing innovation in a broad sense, etc.


Sustainability – The Need for New Narratives


Gonzalo emphasizes the need for sustainability narratives that go beyond apocalyptic approaches and value judgments, avoiding a new dogmatism (a new religion), but instead relying on rational criteria that also address the intimate perceptions of citizens.

Gonzalo Delacamara's Experiences

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