University of Minnesota
University Relations

Yi-Wen Chiu, PhD


About the Group Leader

After serving at the Argonne National Lab as a postdoctoral appointee for three years, Dr. Chiu joined Cal Poly in 2014 and holds the assistant professor position at the Department of Natural Resources Management and Environmental Science, Cal Poly. Dr. Chiu earned her master and PhD degree in water resources science from the University of Minnesota. Her main research interests are to understand the coupling and interaction of human and natural systems by integrating spatial and temporal tools including system dynamics models, geographical information system (GIS), and life-cycle analysis (LCA).

Dr. Chiu's teaching emphasizes on facilitating student engagement in research and solving sustainability challenges. Therefore, in courses she teaches, students can learn quantitative approaches to abstract real-world issues and determine possible solutions. These skills are further aligned with her research interests, with which qualified students can participate in various multidisciplinary research projects to hone their competencies in writing, quantitative analysis, and project implementation. Her ultimate teaching goal is to help students realize what they can contribute to the society, and prepare them to take challenges and tackle hurdles no matter what their career pathways will be.

Dr. Chiu's current on-going research effort aims to incorporate quantitative sustainability and environmental modeling as tools for supporting decision-making processes in natural resources management. You may find additional detailed information regarding her background and research activities at this website.

Research Interests

Water-Energy Nexus, Quantitative Sustainability, Renewable Energy, Application of System Dynamics Model, Application of GIS, and Life Cycle Analysis


NR142 Environmental Management
NR218 Applications in GIS
NR306 Natural Resource Ecology and Habitat Management
NR311 Environmental Metrics Measurements and Analysis
NR418 Applied GIS
NR47x Senior Project
NR534 Ecosystem Modeling

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Contact Information

Yi-Wen Chiu
Assistant Professor

Natural Resources Managemen &
Environmental Science
California Polytechnic State University

Department website

1 Grand Ave. NRES 180-504
San Luis Obispo, CA 93407

Office: +1-805-756-2972 (voice)
E-mail: yichiu at calpoly

Research Assistants

Last Update: 2017-03-07