Seminar: Paolo D'Odorico

Tuesday, April 5, 2022 - 12:00pm

Paolo D'Odorico

Professor of Natural Resources, & Dept. of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management Chair at the University of California, Berkeley.

Water grabbing and water justice in the food-energy-water nexus


The increasing water demand for municipal uses, irrigation, and other businesses raises concerns on the extent to which it will be possible to meet human needs with the limited freshwater resources of the planet. Human appropriation of water resources is already responsible for the depletion of water stocks and the loss of aquatic habitat in many regions of the world. The competition between environmental and human needs is further complicated by the fact that some water needs are associated with the enjoyment of human rights. Therefore, water can be viewed as a natural resource, a human right, or a commodity. This seminar will combine a suite of ecohydrological and socio-environmental analyses to evaluate the biophysical and social justice limits to the sustainable use of water resources through a variety of perspectives accounting for environmental needs, hydrologic constraints, livelihoods, human rights, and water tenure.

Paolo D’Odorico is the Thomas J. Graff Professor of Natural Resources and the Chair of the Department of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management at the University of California, Berkeley. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Padova (Italy), has been a postdoc at Texas A&M and Princeton, and professor at the University of Virginia. His research focuses on the role of hydrological processes in the functioning of terrestrial ecosystems and societies. Through field observations and modeling studies, he is studying new mechanisms of desertification and factors contributing to ecosystem resilience at the desert margins. His work has highlighted the effect of positive ecohydrologic feedbacks between vegetation and its physical environment on the resilience of terrestrial ecosystems. His current work focuses on water, food, and energy security, the globalization of water, water equity, and justice. He has published about 300 articles in peer-reviewed journals, edited a volume on Dryland Ecohydrology (Springer, 2006; 2019); co-authored Noise-Induced Phenomena in the Environmental Sciences (Cambridge, 2011); Elements of Physical Hydrology (Hopkins Press, 2014), and Global Deforestation (Cambridge, 2016). He serving as Editor of Reviews of Geophysics. He has been elected a fellow of the Guggenheim Foundation, AGU, and AAAS.

Lunch reception to follow in the Global Ecology Lobby. If you wish to attend this seminar virtually, please contact La Chelle Eddines at for Zoom details. 

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