Researcher biography

Professor Li obtained his BEng Degree in Environmental Engineering from Tsinghua University (China) in 1988 and his PhD from the University of Western Australia in 1998. His principal research interests lie in mathematical modelling of complex environmental systems. His current work, focusing on processes at the ocean-land interface, has important implications for coastal water resources management and sustainable development. With a large team of researchers from UQ and overseas, he is investigating how fractures develop in coal seams in response to hydraulic fracking, a topic of great interest to the scientific community, coal seam industry and general public. He also has strong interests in field investigation and physical modelling of environmental systems through interactions with experimentalists. In collaboration with scientists from China and UK, he conducted a field investigation on sand dunes in Badain Jaran Desert in the north-west of China. This work (published in Nature) has led to the discovery of a major groundwater system, which could transform the water resources plan in the region. He has published extensively, with over 100 articles in top international journals, and is a regular keynote speaker at international conferences. He is currently Professor and Chair in Environmental Engineering at the University of Queensland. He held visiting professor positions at The University of Edinburgh and EPFL, and is currently holding a prestigious "1000 Talents" visiting professorship at Hohai University. He is currently Editor of Water Science and Engineering, a member of the Editorial Board of Advances in Water Resources and served previously as an Associate Editor of Hydrogeology Journal.