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Lala Kevin | Fellow Visitor
2024-05-07 - 2024-06-25 | Research area: EvoDevo
Evolution Evolving

Evolutionary biology is changing as new ideas flood into it from evolutionary developmental biology, epigenetics, ecology, genomics, the human sciences, and many other disciplines. This is leading to welcome new thinking, and one such novel perspective is the Extended Evolutionary Synthesis, or EES (Pigluicci & Müller, 2010; Laland et al 2014, 2015; Müller, 2017, 2021). Central to this perspective is the idea that knowledge of how organisms develop, grow, and interact with their environments helps researchers to account for both adaptation and the diversity of life. Inspired by developments in evo devo and eco evo devo, in recent years the EES has consolidated into a research program in its own right, lending impetus to a number of topics including developmental bias/constraint, epigenetic inheritance, animal culture, plasticity-led evolution and niche construction. What is required now are accessible synthetic resources that pull these novel findings together and make a coherent case for conceptual change within evolutionary science. While such resources potentially take many forms, books remain of central importance, particularly scientific books that are comprehensible to a wider audience. In addition, workshops play a vital role, by generating discussion of conceptual developments, building teams, and coordinating activities.