Xiaoxue Weng

Former Researcher, Natural Resources

Xiaoxue Weng's picture
Languages: English, Mandarin Chinese (native), Japanese (native), Spanish (beginner) and German (beginner)

Xiaoxue Weng's research focus on  natural resources governance, the informal economy and the evolving role of Chinese and other emerging market players in Africa. As a part of her work, she engages closely with Chinese and African policymakers in the natural resource sector as well as Chinese, African and international civil society organisations. She builds partnerships in China, Africa and Europe for IIED's work on Chinese overseas investment in the global South.   


Natural resource governance; forests; informal economy; Chinese investments in Africa's land-use sectors; China's overseas investment policy framework.

Before IIED

  • Consultant, China-Africa project, CIFOR (Center for International Forestry Research)
  • CSR specialist,  ECOLOGIA 


  • MSc in Environmental Change and Management, University of Oxford; BA in International Politics and Economics, Middlebury College 

Current work

  • Conducts research and policy engagement for the China-Africa Forest Governance Project, examining Chinese investments in the forestry and other land-use sectors that affect Africa's forests in Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Mozambique and Uganda
  • Leads the Africa-China Informal Resources Trade (PDF) research project examining the role of small-scale Chinese investment in Africa's informal economy. The research focuses on the social and environmental implications of Chinese investments and trade in informal agriculture, mining and timber trade in Eastern and South-east Africa. Watch a short video here
  • Other research work related to China's role in Africa’s economic development