Cheong’s current research focuses on the social consequences of environmental disasters and climate change adaptation. She is the author of numerous publications in top interdisciplinary environment, policy, and geography journals such as: Nature Climate Change; Climatic Change; Ecology and Society; Environment and Planning; Transactions of the Institute of the British Geographers; and Marine Policy. She has also worked on a number of commissioned reports for the Korean government, UNESCO, and WMO on the topics of coastal management, climate change adaptation, boundary issues, and disaster management. She is a lead author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Sixth Assessment Report (AR6) and the IPCC Special Report on ocean and cryosphere (SROCC). Previously she served as an author of the IPCC SREX and AR5, and participated in IPCC scoping meetings for SROCC and AR6. Her recent awards include the National Academies Gulf Research Program grant, NSF CAREER award and the Korea Foundation Fellowship.
Cheong received her PhD in geography from the University of Washington, where she also earned MA degrees in marine affairs and international studies. She earned her BA in English from Yonsei University in Korea, and was an exchange student at Reed College in Portland, Oregon. She was also a visiting professor at Stanford, NYU, and BRGM (French Geological Survey).