Conghe Song conducts research with remotely sensed data, household surveys, and ecological models to understand how land surface is changing, why it is changing and what the associated social-ecological consequences of these changes are. He integrates remote sensing and ecological models to estimate the land surface carbon and water dynamics as a result of land-cover/land-use change in the context of climate change. He collects and analyzes household survey data to understand the driving forces and the socioeconomic consequences of land-cover/land-use change.
His more recent research investigates interrelationships among land-cover/land-use change and global climate change, deforestation and reforestation, urban expansion, and agricultural extensification and abandonment. This has led him to develop a strong interest in the population-environment area, intersecting physical geography, human geography, and demography. This research embraces the complex interplay of human-environment systems by examining feedbacks of environmental consequences of land-cover/land-use change to household demographics, socio-economic behavior, and well-being. This has implications for environmental and development policies pertaining to patterns of land-cover/land-use change. He maps land-cover/land-use change through both ground surveys and satellite remote sensing, and uses statistical and spatial simulation models to understand multi-scale human and environmental processes.
He teaching remote sensing, geographic information sciences, and modeling of environmental systems in the Department of Geography. He also provides various services to the Department of Geography and UNC, including being Director of the Graduate Certificate Program in Geographic Information Sciences.