Shanghai has appointed a City University professor to a top-level position in its weather bureau in the hope the Hong Kong academic will bring a breath of fresh air to the city's weather forecasts. Professor Johnny Chan Chung-leung, associate dean of the university's science and engineering faculty, has been chosen to head Shanghai's 22-member Typhoon Research Institute, officials and local newspapers said. This marks the first time a mainland weather bureau has hired an expert from outside for such an influential position, they said. 'We want to improve our research work. We want to create an influential institution,' said Xu Yimin, deputy director of the Shanghai Meteorological Bureau. The Chinese government is increasingly looking to Hong Kong for talent, but most appointees have been in the financial field. Laura Cha Shih May-lung, former executive director of Hong Kong's Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), is now working for the China Securities Regulatory Commission as a vice-chair. Anthony Neoh, also formerly of the SFC, has served as an adviser to the mainland's securities regulator. Professor Chan will keep his academic post in Hong Kong and work in Shanghai only during the typhoon season, which usually lasts from July to September, local newspapers said. His salary will be about 1,000 yuan (HK$950) a day, the Shanghai Morning Post said. Officials said the weather bureau would welcome him to the new position in a formal ceremony tomorrow. Professor Chan, who is already in Shanghai, has declined to comment until after the ceremony. The academic will train meteorologists, improve the accuracy of forecasts, and lend expertise to the prediction of typhoons and tropical storms, which hit the city two to three times a year, officials said. 'He is a well-known expert,' Mr Xu said. Professor Chan's skills include climate, typhoon and weather prediction, as well as monsoon studies and air pollution monitoring, City University says on its Web site. He did his undergraduate work in Hong Kong and his doctorate at Colorado State University in the United States. Professor Chan recently completed a project for the Hong Kong government on rainfall prediction, and has served as a consultant to Chinese television on weather programmes. His appointment follows Typhoon Rammasun, which brushed Shanghai last week. Five people were killed and 44 injured when a building collapsed amid high winds and heavy rain.