Yihsu Chen is an associate professor at University of California Merced.  He holds a joint appointment with School of Engineering and School of Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts. He is also affiliated with UCE3 (University of California Center for Energy and Environmental Economics), and SNRI (Sierra Nevada Research Institute).

Dr. Chen received his B.S. degree from Tunghai University in Taiwan in Environmental Science (1995), a Master's degree from Harvard University in Health Policy and Management and Environmental Health (1999) as well as a Ph.D. degree from The Johns Hopkins University in System Analyses and Economics in Public Decision Making within Department of Geography and Environmental Engineering (2006).  He then joined the faculty of University of California Merced in the same year. He was promoted to associate professor with tenure in 2012.

Dr. Chen's main research focuses on studying the impact of energy and environmental regulation on electricity, biofuel and transportation sectors.  His research takes interdisciplinary approaches: quantitative models built upon economic principles and solved with operations research techniques. He has published around thirty papers in peer-reviewed journals that span across different disciples: IEEE Transactions on Power Systems, Operations Research, Naval Research Logistics, Computational Management Science, Network and Spatial Economics, Applied Energy, Journal of Energy Engineering (Engineering), Nature: Climate Change, Environmental Science and Technology (Science), American Economics Journal: Economic Policy, Resources and Energy Economics, The Energy Journal, Journal of Regulatory Economics, Energy Economics, Energy Policy (Economics and Public Policy). His work has received two INFORMS ENRE awards: 2004 best student paper (first place) and 2013 best publication in sustainability (second place).

Dr. Chen's work typically is policy relevant. In particular, his work on emission trading policies has received considerable attention and also directly contributed to policy debates. For example, his early work with Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN) on the European ETS (Emission Trading Scheme) windfall profits led to the European Commission auction off emission allowances in the second phase of the ETS. The work has received more than 400 Google citations.  His work on the equivalence of emission trading programs with different point-of-regulation also partly helped California Air Resources Board finalize their decisions in implementing first-sellers approach to control greenhouse gas emissions associated with imported power. His other work includes life-cycle analysis of biofuel production and air pollution impact of public transit system, evaluation of ecosystem services, and etc.

During academic year of 2013-2014, Yihsu Chen, on his sabbatical leave, visits the GRIPS (National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies) in Japan, with the support of a JSPS (Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science) fellowship to study the implementation of demand response programs and to examine operation and investment decision in smart-grid marketplace. Yihsu Chen is also an associate editor of IEEE Transactions on Power Systems and ASCE Journal of Energy Engineering, and has co-edited a few special issues in Journal of Energy Engineering (2010), IEEE Transactions on Power System.  He served as the newsletter editor of INFORMS ENRE during 2010-2013.