Faculty Experts - J. Adam Langley, PhD

J. Adam Langley, PhD

J. Adam Langley, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Biology
Villanova University College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Area of Expertise:

  • Global Change Ecology
  • Carbon Cycling
  • Coastal Wetland Sustainability 



Dr. Langley is the source to turn to for expertise on how ecosystems respond to, and may play a part in, global and environmental change. The future of ecosystems is extremely complex and uncertain, but Dr. Langley is working to predict changes through novel isotopic and gas exchange techniques that measure carbon and nutrient cycling. He has also done extensive research on the marshes in the Chesapeake Bay and can comment on the sustainability of coastal wetlands.


  • Ph.D., Northern Arizona University
  •  M.S., Northern Arizona University
  • B.A., North Carolina State University  

Selected Publications

  • Langley JA, Mozdzer TJ, Shepard KA, Hagerty SB, Megonigal JP.  “Elevated CO2, nitrogen pollution and tidal marsh plant response to sea level rise.” Global Change Ecology, in press, 2013.
  • Chapman SK, Palanivel RU, Langley JA. “Soil carbon stability responds to land-use and groundcover management is southern Appalachian agroecosystems.” Soil Science Society of America Journal 76: 2221-2229, 2012.
  • Kirwan ML, Langley JA, Guntenspergen GR, Megonigal JP. “The impact of sea-level rise on organic matter decay rates in Chesapeake Bay brackish tidal marshes.”  Biogeosciences Discussions 9: 14689, 2012.
  • Langley JA, Megonigal JP. “Field-based radiometry to estimate tidal marsh plant growth in response to elevated CO2 and nitrogen addition.” Wetlands 32: 571-578, 2012.
  • White KP, Langley JA, Cahoon DR, Megonigal JP. “Contrasting C3 and C4 root-shoot allocation responses to elevated CO2 and nitrogen: implications for tidal marsh elevation.” Estuaries and Coasts 35: 1028- 1035, 2012.

Selected Professional Experience

  • Research Associate, Smithsonian Environmental Research Center
  • Research Scientist, Smithsonian Environmental Research Center
  • Research Assistant Professor, Villanova University
  • Research Assistant, Northern Arizona University
  • Mass Spectrometrist, Colorado Plateau Stable Isotope Laboratory Instructor              

Selected Research

  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Co-Principal Investigator, “Mangroves Marching Northward,” 2012-2015.
  • National Science Foundation, Principal Investigator, Long-Term Research in Environmental Biology (LTREB): “Twenty-three years of tidal marsh response to environmental change,” 2010-2015.
  • United States Department of Energy, Principal Investigator, National Institutes of Climate Change Research (NICCR): “Elevated CO2, sea-level rise and the biotic controls on marsh soil elevation change,” 2009-2012.
  • National Science Foundation, Principal Investigator, “RAPID: Manipulating plant and microbial resource environment to optimize oil degradation in coastal marshes,” 2010-2011.
  • National Science Foundation, Co-Principal Investigator, Smithsonian’s Global Change Research Facilities for Large-Scale Ecological Forecasting, 2010-2013.

About Villanova

Since 1842, Villanova University’s Augustinian Catholic intellectual tradition has been the cornerstone of an academic community in which students learn to think critically, act compassionately and succeed while serving others. There are more than 10,000 undergraduate, graduate and law students in the University's six colleges – the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Villanova School of Business, the College of Engineering, the College of Nursing, the College of Professional Studies and the Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law. As students grow intellectually, Villanova prepares them to become ethical leaders who create positive change everywhere life takes them.

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