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Megonigal, Patrick

Fellowship Advisor
Smithsonian Environmental Research Center staff

wetland ecology, microbial ecology, soil ecology, biogeochemistry, climate change impacts; tidal wetland vulnerability to sea level rise

Research Areas research areas

Professional Biography

  • J. Patrick Megonigal is Senior Scientist and Associate Director of Research at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center. He is an ecosystem ecologist with research interests in carbon and greenhouse gas cycling in wetlands and forests, particularly as they relate to climate change. He is the Lead Investigator of the Smithsonian’s Global Change Research wetland, a long-term research program focused on the stability of tidal wetlands faced with accelerated sea level rise. Dr. Megonigal has authored over 110 peer-reviewed publications and is a Fellow of both the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA) and the Ecological Society of America. Dr. Megonigal was Curator of the major exhibit Dig It! The Secrets of Soils, for which he won a SSSA Presidential Citation, the Smithsonian Institution Secretary’s Research Prize, the Renewable Natural Resources Foundation’s Outstanding Achievement Award, and the Soil and Water Conservation Society’s Merit Award.

Public Biography

  • J. Patrick Megonigal is Senior Scientist and Associate Director of Research at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center. He studies the interactions of plants and soil microbes as they impact carbon cycling and greenhouse gas emissions from wetlands and forests. He directs the Smithsonian’s Global Change Research wetland, a long-term research program focused on the stability of tidal wetlands faced with accelerated sea level rise. Dr. Megonigal has authored over 110 peer-reviewed publications and is a Fellow of both the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA) and the Ecological Society of America. Dr. Megonigal was Curator of a major exhibit about soils -- Dig It! The Secrets of Soils -- for which he won a SSSA Presidential Citation, the Smithsonian Institution Secretary’s Research Prize, the Renewable Natural Resources Foundation’s Outstanding Achievement Award, and the Soil and Water Conservation Society’s Merit Award.

awards and honors