International Exploratory Workshop 2017: Ecological genomics of coevolutionary interactions
Venue: Alexander & Gerbi Hotel, Weggis, Switzerland
Date: January 8th – January 13rd 2017
- Center for Adaptation to a Changing Environment (ACE), ETH Zurich, Switzerland
- Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF)
Title: Concepts and methods in ecological genomics of coevolutionary interactions: bridging the gap between theory and empirical studies.
Key topics and Focus of the Workshop
Theoretical models suggest that coevolution promotes reciprocal adaptation at the phenotypic and molecular levels. However, to date there are few conclusive empirical examples of sustained coevolution demonstrating recurrent reciprocal changes driven by natural selection at the phenotypic and genotypic levels. Over the past 10 years, the development of next-generation sequencing (NGS) technologies has unlocked new frontiers for research on the genomics of coevolutionary interactions. Nevertheless, a conceptual bridge between these novel genomics approaches and latest theoretical developments are still sorely lacking to tackle phenotypic and genetic changes associated with coevolution and its response to global environmental change. The focus of our workshop is to fill this gap by bringing together young and senior researchers working on the ecological genomics of coevolutionary interactions at both theoretical and empirical levels.
Aims and Objectives
The goal of our 5-days workshop is to bring together an outstanding group of experts that develop conceptual, theoretical and experimental approaches to study the ecological genomics of coevolutionary interactions. These instructors will introduce workshop participants to modern concepts, models and methods that are widely being used or are currently being developed. The first four days of the workshop will consist of lectures and practical demonstrations given by the instructors, followed by hands-on exercises performed by the participants under guided supervision. The lectures will focus on current topics and latest developments relevant for investigating ecogenomics of coevolutionary interactions (see program: inferring co-demographic histories and testing for co-adaptation). Participants will focus on datasets provided by the instructors in the light of new developments. On the fifth day, thematic talk sessions with presentations from invited speakers and selected participants will illustrate current research on the ecological genomics of coevolution. In order to enhance discussions during the five-day workshop, we will also ask participants to present a poster of their own work on the first day (see “Speed talk and introductory poster session“ in the program) to introduce themselves and their research topic.
The workshop is primarily targeting evolutionary biologists who want to gain deeper knowledge on state-of-the-art concepts and methods used to investigate coevolutionary interactions (mutualistic or antagonist) using genomic tools and ecological data. Applications from early career researchers (priority to doctoral students and research postgraduates), as well as faculty with a background in ecology, evolution or genetics, will be considered. Other participants with a broader background are welcome. Participants will be requested to bring their own laptop to be able to connect to the server for the practical sessions.