Public speaking

Julian Caldecott, Ph.D.

Adviser on systemic risk and opportunity in changing environments

A Topical …

In 2017, Julian deployed his eye-witness analysis of 50 major investments in a book (Aid Performance and Climate Change) to explore the questions “What have we learned, what do we do now, and how do we do it better?”.  The answers will guide our responses to the systemic risks and opportunities that face us all.

Inspirational …

“Dear Julian – the workshop on sustainable investments that we held in Dublin is one of my most happy memories, and I am still grateful for the inspiring lecture you gave.”  Stefan Einsiedel, Allianz Global Investors GmbH.

Controversial …

At the 2014 Summit of the World Travel & Tourism Council in Haikou, China, the chair of the WTTC awards panel asked whether the business world is brave enough to go beyond taking profits but letting others bear the environmental costs.  In his keynote, Julian Caldecott described “the rapid unplanned development of destinations”, and “developments that ruin landscapes and undermine ecologies through the suffocation of coral reefs by sediments, the crushing of aquifers, the run-off of sewage into local water supplies”.  He concluded that “good planning and good regulation are essential to tourism development.”  Ian Taylor, Travel Weekly.

Authoritative …

  • On Julian’s book about how we spend US$ 165 billion each year on aid and climate change, John Carstensen, Head of Climate and Environment at the UK’s Department for International Development wrote “This is the most extensive analysis of lessons based on solid evaluations that I have come across – a must-have for sustainability practitioners and evaluators, and a book I wish I had been able to read many years ago.”
  • On Julian’s book about how to conserve tropical ecosystems, biodiversity expert Professor Daniel H. Janzen wrote “This book should be read and discussed in detail by any course in conservation biology, developing country politics, contemporary anthropology, and national and local tropical economics. THIS is a conservation biology textbook!”.
  • On Julian’s book about water and the global water crisis, Steven Poole in The Guardian described it as “a brilliant overview of an enormous subject”.

and Experienced …

Julian gained a First with Honours in Biology at Southampton, and a doctorate on Malaysian rainforest ecology and primatology at St John’s College, Cambridge.  He spent the 1980s working on wildlife management and biodiversity conservation in Borneo and Nigeria, and the 1990s freelancing worldwide.  Since then, he has led major studies on aid performance, climate change and environmental sustainability for all the biggest donors (see CV here).

Guide to the Real World!

Julian brings an eye-witness, rigorous and analysis-based knowledge of the real world, offering a unique perspective on the birth of the Anthropocene and what it means for our immediate priorities and future, and what we should do now to ensure our own survival and prosperity.  His many years of hands-on experience in scores of countries, landscapes, communities, and institutions give his talks a rare quality of immediacy and depth.  Give him a map, and he will give you the reality behind it: the peoples, the politics, the wildlife, the resources, the dangers, the opportunities, and the way forward.  Give him a brief, and he will give you a host of real life examples to make complex things understandable, and difficult things useful.

Video links

Key speaking topics:

For businesses:

  • Changing incentives for investing in sustainability:
  • Businesses in the real environment:

For aid professionals:

  • How to prove that aid investments are worth it [see annex on courses].
  • How to make climate change adaptation a way of life [see annex on courses].

For schools:

  • How to build a career saving the environment.
  • How to build a career in overseas development.

For social gatherings:

  • My search for the zebra-striped Land Rover (for dinner parties).
  • What we lost, what we still have, and what to do now (for everyone).

Recent speaking engagements:

  • Sustainable development in the Indonesian Seas (Bath).
  • Water in the Biosphere (Helsinki).
  • Travel and tourism: a force for good in a problematic world? (Haikou, China)
  • Water, climate change, and ecological integrity (Brasília).
  • 1975 – 2035: Earth in the balance (London).
  • Indonesia: part of the problem or part of the solution? (Sydney)
  • Sustainable investments in times of polar and financial meltdown (Dublin).
  • The value of environmental careers (Bath).
  • Environment, sustainability, alternative fuels in the transport sector (Bradford).
  • Water and climate change ethics (Oxford).

His books include:

2017: Aid Performance and Climate Change (Routledge)

2008: Water, the Causes, Costs and Consequences of a Global Crisis (Virgin)

2005: World Atlas of Great Apes and their Conservation (California)

1996: Designing Conservation Projects (Cambridge)