Richard Elelman

World Water Quality Alliance (WWQA), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)

High-Level Speakers

Having studied in the United Kingdom (obtaining a Doctorate in Political Science), and working in freelance journalism, theatre, political analysis and environmental and cultural politics in Spain, India, Portugal, and the Sudan, Richard Elelman is currently the Acting Coordinator of the World Water Quality Alliance, based at UNEP Headquarters in Nairobi until April 2023 when he will return to his permanent position as the Head of Politics of EURECAT, the Technology Centre of Catalonia. Over the last 18 years, much of his work has been dedicated to the creating of bridges between the world of Research and Innovation and political institutions such as the European Union, (with whom he collaborates as an External Expert as the co-leader of the RENAISSANCE Approach to Science-Culture-Diplomacy), the OECD, the UFM and a number of national and regional governments.

He is an expert in the politics of Climate Change, and its socio-political effects with regards to migration and gender equality and is the creator of the bi-annual CASSANDRA Conference which addresses this subject. He has published widely on the issue of citizen engagement in Europe and the Middle East and the political aspects of the WATER-ENERGY-FOOD-ECOSYSTEMS-HEALTH Nexus. A former Mayor in Spain, he was the founder and Director General of NETWERC H2O and served on the Board of Directors of WATER EUROPE between 2017 and 2021. At the invitation of Commissioner Karmenu Vella, he was on the Steering Group of EIP Water between 2016 and 2020. Richard Elelman who has received a number of awards (including the Medal of Excellence, Saint Petersburg, Florida, 2011, the Premi John Shields, 22@Network, 2011 (Spain) and The CILMA Award for the Best Environmental Policy of 2009) regularly speaks at conferences in Europe, the United States, the Middle East and South America.