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Biodiversity-Seminar: Diversification, trait architecture and coexistence in complex ecosystems



WSL Birmensdorf, Englersaal


Nadia Castro Izaguirre


Dr. Carlos  Melian, Department Fish Ecology & Evolution, Eawag


Francois Duchenne




Vorträge und Kolloquien


Anyone interested in the topics


The species concept is still challenging biology, ecology and evolution. Take the Latitudinal Biodiversity Gradient (LBG). Do the Tropics produce more species? LBG looks to be gone in deep time. Environmental gradients, dynamic landscapes in time and space might be external causes for diversifying lineages, and huge progress has been made to build a diversification theory along these lines. Yet, most lineages strongly differ in diversification rates. Why? Some contain thousands of species while others just a few. What if DNA, genomic processes, development, gene expression, behavior, sexual selection all embedded in complex trait architectures combine with external factors to produce a set of interacting layers challenging any attempt to build a solid diversification theory? Experimental evolution brings light to the speciation process. Many studies have shown ecological diversification from bacterial communities to eukaryotic taxa. Theoretical speciation models, from population genetics to statistical physics have also shown predictions fitting diversifying lineages but theory connecting external and internal processes to experiments and empirical data to understand diversification to coexistence remains open. In this talk I will discuss around these questions, some existing gaps and the challenges ahead for building synthesis in a diversification theory. 

Link for online participation

Please send an Email to Nadia Castro Izaguirre if you would like to get access to the live stream.


The Biodiversity Seminar Series (BD-Seminars) are organized by the WSL Biodiversity Center. Every two weeks, we aim to host a seminar speaker that presents research or outreach on topics relevant to the biodiversity community at WSL. The seminars are public and are usually broadcasted online.

Find out more about the WSL Biodiversity Center and a complete list of events here:

Please send an Email to Nadia Castro Izaguirre if you would like to be updated on the activities of the WSL Biodiversity Center.