Jianwu (Jim) Tang

Jim TangAssociate Scientist

Tel: 508-289-7162 | Fax: 508-457-1548
E-mail: jtang@mbl.edu

Ph.D., University of California at Berkeley, 2003
M.S., Peking University, China, 1995
B.S., Peking University, China, 1992

CV: Full CV 2015
Projects: https://tangecosystem.wordpress.com/

Research Statement

I am interested in ecosystem biogeochemistry, soil-plant-atmosphere interactions, and global change ecology. My research focuses on the impacts of climate change and human activities on ecosystem processes and functions, and the feedback to the climate and Earth system. I use observational, experimental, and modeling approaches to understand and simulate carbon, nitrogen, and water cycles within ecosystems and between the Earth surface and the atmosphere across various scales. My research improves our understanding of ecosystem services and informs sound environmental and climate policies.

I study ecosystems that range from semiarid forests and savanna grassland in the Sierra Nevada of California, northern forests and prairie grassland in the Midwestern U.S., temperate forests and coastal wetlands in New England, and tundra ecosystems in the Arctic. Currently, I focus on three major topics under a unified theme of ecosystem ecology and biogeochemistry.

1) Soil respiration, respiration-photosynthesis interactions, and soil warming effects on belowground processes and greenhouse gas emissions in forest and tundra. I also examine the partitioning of soil respiration into microbial and root respiration. I conduct this work at Harvard Forest and in the Arctic of northern Alaska. Both Harvard Forest and the Toolik Field Station in the Arctic are Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER) sites.

2) Effects of climate change on phenology and carbon cycles in forests. We use near-surface cameras and field-based spectroradiometers and fluorescence spectroscopy and link ground-based measures of phenology with imagery data obtained from satellites. This work is conducted at the Harvard Forest, on Martha’s Vineyard near Woods Hole, Massachusetts, and broader scales.

3) Greenhouse gas (CO2, CH4, and N2O) emissions from agro-ecosystems and wetlands and their responses to management and disturbance. The agriculture research is conducted in the University of Massachusetts’s Agricultural Station and in chicken farms in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. I am working to expand this work to Sub-Saharan Africa and Brazil to evaluate greenhouse gas emissions under increasingly intensified agriculture. The wetland work evaluates the role of “blue carbon” in coastal wetlands and the significance of wetland restoration in carbon sequestration.

Recent Publications (* indicates advisee)

Google Scholar: http://scholar.google.com/citations?user=cJs5jJQAAAAJ&hl=en
Research ID: www.researcherid.com/rid/K-6798-2014


Liu*, Z., H. Hu, H. Yu, X. Yang, H. Yang, C. Ruan, Y. Wang, J. Tang, 2016. Relationship between leaf physiological traits and canopy color indices during the spring leaf-expansion period in an oak forest, Ecosphere, In press.

Liu, L., C. Hu, P. Yang, Z. Ju, J. Olesen, J. Tang, 2016. Experimental warming-driven soil drying reduced N2O emissions from fertilized crop rotations of winter wheat-soybean/fallow, 2009-2014, Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment. In press.


Yang*, X., J. Tang, J. Mustard, J.-E. Lee, M. Rossini, J. Joiner, J. W. Munger, A. Kornfeld, A. D. Richardson, 2015. Solar-induced chlorophyll fluorescence correlates with canopy photosynthesis on diurnal and seasonal scales in a temperate deciduous forest. Geophysical Research Letters, 42(8):2977–2987.

Wang, Y., H. Zhang, J. Tang, J. Xu, T. Kou, H. Huang, 2015. Accelerated phosphorus accumulation and acidification of soils under plastic greenhouse condition in four representative organic vegetable cultivation sites, Scientia Horticulturae,195(11):67–73.

Mo, Q., B. Zou, Y. Li, Y. Chen, W. Zhang, R. Mao, J. Wang, X. Lu, X. Li, J. Tang, Z. Li, F. Wang, 2015. Response of plant nutrient stoichiometry to fertilization varies with plant tissues in a tropical forest, Scientific Reports, 5:14605, DOI:10.1038/srep14605.

Gelfand, I., M. Cui, J. Tang, G. P. Robertson, 2015. Short-term drought response of N2O and CO2 emissions from mesic agricultural soils in the US Midwest. Agriculture, Ecosystems, and Environment, 212:127–133.

Chen, C., D. Li, Z. Gao, J. Tang, X. Guo, L. Wang, B. Wan, 2015, Seasonal and interannual variation of carbon exchange over a rice–wheat rotation system on the north China plain, Advances in Atmospheric Sciences, 32:1365-1380.

Chen, Y., E.J. Sayer, Z. Li, Q. Mo, Y. Li, Y. Ding, J. Wang, X. Lu, J. Tang, F. Wang, 2015. Nutrient limitation of woody debris decomposition in a tropical forest: Contrasting effects of N and P addition, Functional Ecology, DOI:10.1111/1365-2435.12471, in press.

Liu, L., C. Hu, P. Yang, Z. Ju, J. Olesen, J. Tang, 2015. Effects of experimental warming and nitrogen addition on soil respiration and CH4 fluxes from crop rotations of winter wheat-soybean/fallow. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 207:38-47.

Chen*, X., S. He, Y. Zhang, X. Huang, Y. Huang, D. Chen, X. Huang, J. Tang, 2015. Enhancement of nitrate removal at the sediment–water interface by carbon addition plus vertical mixing, Chemosphere, 136:305-310.

Shibata, H., C. Branquinho, W. H. McDowell, M. J. Mitchell, D. Monteith, J. Tang, L. Arvola, C. Cruz, C. Máguas, D. Cusack, L. Halada, J. Kopacek, S. Sajidu, H. Schubert, N. Tokuchi, J. Záhora. 2015. Consequence of altered nitrogen cycles in the coupled human and ecological system under changing climate: The need for long-term and site-based research, Ambio, 44:178-193.


Tang, J., S. Luyssaert, A. D. Richardson, W. Kutsch, I. A. Janssens, 2014. Steeper declines in forest photosynthesis than respiration explain age-driven decreases in forest, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA (PNAS), 111(24): 8856-8860.

Wang*, Y., J. Tang, H. Zhang, T. Kou, 2014. Aggregate-associated organic carbon and nitrogen impacted by the long-term combined application of rice straw and pig manure in the red soils in south China. Soil Science, 179:522-528.

Hickman, J. E., C. A. Palm, P. Mutuo, J. M. Melillo, J. Tang, 2014. Nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions in response to increasing fertilizer addition in maize (Zea mays L.) agriculture in western Kenya, Nutrient Cycling in agroecosystems, 100(2):177-187.

Meredith, L. K., R. Commane, A. Dunn, J. W. Munger, J. Tang, S. C. Wofsy, R. G. Prinn, 2014. Ecosystem fluxes of hydrogen: a comparison of flux-gradient methods, Atmospheric Measurement Techniques, 7:2787–2805.

Wang, X., L. Liu, S. Piao, I. Janssens, J. Tang, W. Liu, Y. Chi, J. Wang, S. Xu, 2014. Soil respiration under climate warming: differential response of heterotrophic and autotrophic respiration, Global Change Biology, 20: 3229-3237.

Wang*, Y, J. Tang, H. Zhang, J. Schroder, Y. He, 2014, Phosphorus availability and sorption as affected by long-term fertilization, Agronomy Journal, 106:1583-1592. doi:10.2134/agronj14.0059.

Zheng*, H., H. Huang, L. Yao, J. Liu, H. He, J. Tang, 2014, Impacts of rice varieties and management on yield-scaled greenhouse gas emissions from rice fields in China: A meta-analysis, Biogeosciences, 11: 3685–3693.

Yang*, X., J. Tang, J. Mustard, 2014. Beyond leaf color: comparing camera-based phenological metrics with leaf biochemical, biophysical and spectral properties throughout the growing season of a temperate deciduous forest, Journal of Geophysical Research-Biogeosciences, 119: 181–191, doi:10.1002/2013JG002460.


Hopkins, F., M. A. Gonzalez-Meler, C. E. Flower, D. J. Lynch, C. Czimczik, J. Tang, J.-A. Subke, 2013. Ecosystem-level controls on root-rhizosphere respiration, New Phytologist, 199: 339–351.

Savage K., E. A. Davidson, J. Tang, 2013. Diel patterns of autotrophic and heterotrophic respiration among phenological stages, Global Change Biology, 19: 1151–1159.

Tang, J. M., and J. W. Tang, 2013. Linking spatial pattern and biophysical parameters of urban vegetation by multitemporal Landsat imagery, IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Letters, 10(5): 1263-1267, doi:10.1109/lgrs.2013.2259795.

Giasson, M.-A.,A. M. Ellison, R. D. Bowden, P. M. Crill, E. A. Davidson, J. E. Drake, S. D. Frey, J. L. Hadley, M. Lavine, J. M. Melillo, J. W. Munger, K. J. Nadelhoffer, E. Nicoll, S. V. Ollinger, K. E. Savage, P. A. Steudler, J. Tang, R. K. Varner, S. C. Wofsy, D. R. Foster, and A. C. Finzi, 2013. Soil respiration in a northeastern US temperate forest: a 22-year synthesis. Ecosphere, 4(11):140. http://dx.doi.org/10.1890/ES13.00183.1.

Vihervaara P., D. D'Amato, M. Forsius, P. Angelstam, C. Baessler, P. Balvanera, B. Boldgiv, P. Bourgeron, J. Dick, R. Kanka , S. Klotz, M. Maass, V. Melecis, P. Petřík, H. Shibata, J. Tang, J. Thompson, S. Zacharias, 2013. Using long-term ecosystem service and biodiversity data to study the impacts of and adaptation options in response to climate change: insights from the global ILTER sites network, Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, 5:53-66.


Yang*, X., J. F. Mustard, J. Tang, H. Xu, 2012. Regional scale phenology modeling based on meteorological records and remote sensing observations, Journal of Geophysical Research-Biogeosciences, 117, G03029, doi:10.1029/2012JG001977.


Zhou*, Y.M., J. Tang, J.M. Melillo, S. Butler, J.E. Mohan, 2011. Root standing crop and chemistry after six years of soil warming in a temperate forest. Tree Physiology, 31: 707-717.

Liu S., B. Bond-Lamberty, J. A. Hicke, R. Vargas, S. Zhao, J. Chen, S. L. Edburg, J. Liu, A. D. McGuire, J. Xiao, R. Keane, W. Yuan, J. Tang, Y. Luo, C. Potter, and J. Oeding, 2011. Simulating the impacts of disturbances on forest carbon cycling in North America: processes, data, models, and challenges, Journal of Geophysical Research-Biogeosciences, 116, G00K08, doi:10.1029/2010JG001585.

Cao, S., G. Sun, Z. Zhang, L. Chen, Q. Feng, B. Fu, S. McNulty, D. Shankman, J. Tang, Y. Wang, X. Wei, 2011. Greening China naturally, Ambio, 40: 828-831. DOI: 10.1007/s13280-011-0150-8.

Moseman-Valtierra S., R. Gonzalez, K. Kroeger, J. Tang, W. Chao, J. Crusius, J. Bratton, A. Green and J. Shelton, 2011. Short-term nitrogen additions can shift a coastal wetland from a sink to a source of N2O, Atmospheric Environment, 45: 4390-4397.

Chen, L., Z. Zhang, Z. Li, J. Tang, P. Caldwell, W. Zhang, 2011. Biophysical control of whole tree transpiration under an urban environment in Northern China, Journal of Hydrology, 402: 388-400.

Melillo J.M., S. Butler, J. Johnson, J. Mohan, P.A. Steudler, H. Lux, E. Burrows, F. Bowles, R. Smith, T. Hill, C. Vario, A.J. Burton, Y. Zhou, J. Tang, 2011. Soil warming, carbon-nitrogen interactions and forest carbon budgets, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA (PNAS), 108: 9508-9512. Highlighted by “Faculty of 1000 Biology”

Harmon M.E., B. Bond-Lamberty, J. Tang, and R. Vargas, 2011. Heterotrophic respiration in disturbed forests: A review with examples from North America, Journal of Geophysical Research-Biogeosciences 116, G00K04, doi:10.1029/2010JG001495.


Janssens I.A., W. Dieleman, S. Luyssaert, J.-A. Subke, M. Reichstein, R. Ceulemans, P. Ciais, A.J. Dolman, J. Grace, G. Matteucci, D. Papale, S.L. Piao, E.-D. Schulze, J. Tang, B.E. Law, 2010. Reduction of forest soil respiration in response to nitrogen deposition, Nature Geoscience, 3: 315-322.

Liang N., T. Hirano, Z.-M. Zheng, J. Tang, Y. Fujinuma, 2010. Soil CO2 efflux of a larch forest in northern Japan, Biogeosciences, 7: 3447–3457.

Vargas R., D. Baldocchi, M. Allen, M. Bahn, T. Black, S. Collins, J. Curiel Yuste, T. Hirano, R. Jassal, J. Pumpanen, J. Tang, 2010. Looking deeper into the soil: biophysical controls and seasonal lags of soil CO2 production and efflux, Ecological Applications, 20: 1569-1582.

Bahn M., M. Reichstein, E. A. Davidson, J. Grünzweig, M. Jung, M. S. Carbone, D. Epron, L. Misson, Y. Nouvellon, O. Roupsard, K. Savage, S. E. Trumbore, C. Gimeno, J. Curiel Yuste, J. Tang, R. Vargas, and I. A. Janssens, 2010. Soil respiration at mean annual temperature predicts annual total across vegetation types and biomes, Biogeosciences, 7: 2147–2157, doi:10.5194/bg-7-2147-2010.

Research Projects
Martha's Vineyard

Tower-based measurement of leaf phenology on Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts.

Harvard Forest

Soil respiration measured from a belowground CO2 profile system and its comparison with an automated chamber system at Harvard Forest. (Collaborators: Eric Davidson, Kathleen Savage, and Jerry Melillo)


Arctic tundra

Soil respiration in response to warming experiment in an Arctic tundra ecosystem. (Collaborator: Gus Shaver)



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