Weng, Wei


Weng, Wei

Assistant Professor


Office : Room  507, Department of Geography

Email :

Phone : +886-2-33665838

Website :




Dr. Weng worked previously in the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), a global climate think tank, and supported various climate-development projects. Her research focuses on the sustainable management of land-water resources. The geography of her past research is mainly in Latin America but includes hotspots in Europe, East Asia, and Arctic Russia.

She uses both quantitative and qualitative methods to gain an integrated picture of human withdrawal from interconnected land-water systems. Quantitatively, she uses the earth system model to understand the land use change impacts on regional climate. Her exploration of the impacts from Amazonian deforestation on regional water contributes to the ongoing discussion of the ‘aerial rivers’.

The aerial rivers (or flying rivers) are the preferential pathways of moisture flows in the atmosphere. Opposite to their surface counterparts, they are recharged by evapotranspiration and are discharged by the precipitation process. They connect land and water systems. They link entities across jurisdictional boundaries and watersheds. Due to the intangible and statistical nature of the aerial rivers, the understanding of this climatic phenomenon starts only in this century.

Dr. Weng’s group aims to enhance human understanding of aerial rivers and provide useful scientific information for the management of invisible aerial/flying rivers. Her group’s achievement includes science-based land planning for aerial river management in Bolivia which was later awarded by the Humboldt Foundation. This proposal suggested that reforesting important upwind regions would bring additional freshwater to a water-scarce downwind city.

Apart from aerial rivers, Dr. Weng’s group also investigates societal transitions for climate change adaptation. They use qualitative frameworks to analyze ongoing societal transitions after climate disasters in South America. They documented the Colombian energy transition after record-breaking regional mega-droughts and found the remote source regimes crucial for the success of the transition.

Her group is now developing various aspects of land-water system study and welcomes discussions on new topics and collaboration.


Sustainable transition study; Sustainability; Multi-level perspective; Socio-ecological systems; Nature-based solutions; Water-energy-food nexus; Aerial rivers/ flying rivers; Latin American studies; Amazonia; Climate adaptation; Environmental, social, and governance; REDD+; Management of land-water systems, Extreme weather events and disasters



2016-2019 PhD in Geography, Humboldt-Universitaet zu Berlin, Germany

Thesis: Aerial river management for future water in the context of land use change in Amazonia

2013-2014 Master of Science in Water Science, Policy and Management, University of Oxford, UK

2008-2013 Bachelor of Science, National Taiwan University, Taiwan

                   Major: Geography  Minor: Atmospheric Sciences


Work experience

2020-11/2021 Postdoctoral Research Fellow/ Physical Geography department, Stockholm University, Sweden

4/2015-8/2020 Science officer/ Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), Germany

4/2018-10/2018 Visiting scientist, Decision and Policy Analysis (DAPA) International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), Colombia


Transformation of land-water systems GEOG5129
Environmental changes in Amazonia GEOG5130


AuthorDate of PublicationTitleSource
Weng, W., Becker, S. L., Luedeke, M. K. B., and Lakes, T 2020-09 Landscape matters: insights from the impact of mega-droughts on Colombia's energy transition Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions
Weng, W. 2020-02 Aerial river management for future water in the context of land use change in Amazonia  
Weng, W., Costa, L., Luedeke, M. K. B. and Zemp, D. C. 2019-05 Aerial river management by smart cross-border reforestation Land Use Policy
Weng, W., Luedeke, M. K. B., Zemp, D. C., Lakes, T., and Kropp, J. P. 2018-02 Aerial and surface rivers: downwind impacts on water availability from land use changes in Amazonia Hydrology and Earth System Sciences


Fiscal YearPlan NameTitle
112 隱形用水安全:飛河管理之重要性 計畫主持人
111 從河水化學建立河川上游降水事件影響集水區岩石風化之時空訊息反映:以大安溪流域為例 計畫主持人


2014 Grant for Special Research Expenses, Christ Church College, Oxford
2014 Frauenförderung (Women’s research grant), HU Berlin
2018 Resources MDPI Journal Travel Award
2018 Caroline von Humboldt International Research Award
2019 Alexander und ich Award, Humboldt Innovation
2020 The Bolin seed grant, Stockholm