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Robin Riedel

PartnerBay Area

Co-leads the McKinsey Center for Future Mobility

Robin co-leads the McKinsey Center for Future Mobility and its work in mobility disruptors in the Americas and is a global leader of the Disruptive Aerospace sector within McKinsey’s Aerospace & Defense Practice.

His work focuses on innovative topics in the aviation industry, including advanced air mobility, unmanned aerial systems, sustainable aviation, and super or hypersonic flight. This covers the entire value chain, which includes operators, aircraft manufacturers, part-and-service providers, airports, ground handlers, training organizations, regulators, and investors.

In this constantly evolving, competitive market, Robin leverages hands-on expertise and broad, cross-functional knowledge to support clients across the aviation industry by addressing strategic challenges, and capturing value and growth.

Examples of his recent client work include the following:

  • transforming the overall business, covering operations, commercial and headquarters areas, organization, culture, stakeholder management, and integration and carve-out management of multiple air carriers
  • developing growth strategies, including business model and network design, for multiple airlines and aviation businesses
  • advising investors in the due diligence process to acquire stakes in aviation assets, including airlines, leasing companies, and ground-handling providers
  • developing the services strategy, including market and capability assessments and inorganic growth-target scans for aerospace companies
  • redesigning customer experiences by creating brand-focused signature moments to differentiate a midsize network carrier in its market, and transforming key customer journeys for an aviation-services provider

Before joining McKinsey, Robin held department leadership roles in both the commercial and operations branches of a major airline. He is also a certified commercial airline pilot.

Published work

Decarbonizing aviation: Executing on net-zero goals,” McKinsey & Company, June 2023

Short-haul flying redefined: The promise of regional air mobility,” McKinsey & Company, May 2023

Target True Zero: Infrastructure for novel propulsion flight,” McKinsey & Company, May 2023

Building digital platforms to enable advanced air mobility,” McKinsey & Company, December 2022

Clean skies for tomorrow: Delivering on the global power-to-liquid ambition,” McKinsey & Company, August 2022

Decarbonizing the aviation sector: Making net zero aviation possible,” McKinsey & Company, July 2022

Final approach: How airports can prepare for advanced air mobility,” McKinsey & Company, November 2021

Advanced air mobility in 2030,” McKinsey & Company, November 2021

Rideshares in the sky by 2024: Joby Aviation bets big on air taxis,” McKinsey & Company, November 2021

‘Speeding up everyday travel’: Lilium prepares for takeoff,” McKinsey & Company, November 2021

Going vertical: How emerging technologies will power a new value chain,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, August 2021

Reducing aviation emissions over the long and short haul,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, June 2021

Looking to the skies: Funding for future air mobility takes off,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, June 2021

Up in the air: How do consumers view advanced air mobility?,” McKinsey & Company, June 2021

Right in your backyard: Regional airports are an accessible and underused resource for future air mobility,” blog entry, McKinsey & Company, May 2021

How air travel is evolving postpandemic,” McKinsey & Company, May 2021

To take off, flying vehicles first need places to land,” McKinsey & Company, August 2020

Flying-cab drivers wanted,” McKinsey & Company, June 2020

How airlines can chart a path to zero-carbon flying,” McKinsey & Company, May 2020

Coronavirus: Airlines brace for severe turbulence,” McKinsey & Company, April 2020

The future of air travel,” McKinsey & Company, February 2020

Leading from the front line: How airlines can boost ancillary revenues,” McKinsey & Company, February 2019

Taxiing for takeoff: The flying cab in your future,” McKinsey & Company, January 2019

Does your airline still cross seat belts? A ten-point lean checklist for leaders,” McKinsey & Company, August 2018

Refining the flight path: Seven priorities for commercial aerospace leaders through 2020,” McKinsey & Company, July 2018

Salvation or misleading temptation—low-cost brands of legacy airlines,” McKinsey & Company, February 2017

Past Experience

Olympic Air
Airline pilot

Air Canada
Director, global baggage and ramp services
Director, business processes

Blue Wings
Airline pilot


Massachusetts Institute of Technology
MS, aeronautics and astronautics
BS, aerospace engineering