Massimo D'Alema was born in Rome, Italy, on 20 April 1949.
He is married to Linda Giuva, and has two children: Giulia and Francesco. He has a high school diploma in classical studies and studied Philosophy at the University of Pisa.
He is a professional journalist and was Chief Editor of the daily newspaper "L'Unità" from 1988 to 1990.
His political activities began in 1963, when he joined the Italian Young Communists’ Federation (FGCI). In 1975 he was elected General Secretary of the organization, until 1980. In 1987 he was elected member of the Italian Parliament (Chamber of Deputies). In 1989 he was actively engaged in the process which transformed the Italian Communist Party into the Democratic Party of the Left (PDS).
In 1992 he became President of the PDS parliamentary group in the Chamber of Deputies. He was re-elected MP both in 1994 and 1996. In July 1994 he was elected General Secretary of the PDS. On February 5th 1997 he was elected Chair of the parliamentary Committee on Constitutional reform. On 4 November 1997 the Committee submitted to the two Houses of Parliament a draft reform of Part II of the Italian Constitution.
In October 1998 Mr. D’Alema became Prime Minister of Italy. He was in office until April 2000. In December 2000 he was elected President of the Democrats of the Left. In October 2003, at the 22nd Congress of the Socialist International in Sao Paulo, Brazil, he was elected Vice President of the S.I. In June 2004 Mr D’Alema became a Member of the European Parliament.
On 9 April 2006 he was elected MP for Apulia representing the Olive Tree coalition. On May 17th 2006 he was appointed deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Secretary in the Prodi government.
On April 22nd 2008 he was elected MP for Apulia representing the Democratic Party. From January 2010 to March 2013 he has been President of the Parliamentary Commission for the Security of the Republic (COPASIR).
From June 2010 to June 2017 he has been President of Foundation of European Progressive Studies (FEPS).
He is President of the Fondazione Italianieuropei and has published several books.