EEB events: Thursday seminar: Rackham Centennial Alumni Lecture: Biodiversity: from evolutionary origins to ecosystem functioning: Dr. David Tilman, University of Minnesota
David Tilman, University of Minnesota Regents Professor and McKnight Presidential Chair in Ecology, Department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior, University of Minnesota
Ph.D., Zoology, 1976 University of Michigan
David Tilman’s current research explores ways to use biodiversity as a tool for biofuel production and climate stabilization through carbon sequestration. Among other key areas, Tilman’s work focuses on the impacts of human domination of ecosystems, including nitrogen deposition, habitat destruction and fragmentation, and invasive exotic species.
His honors include the 2010 Heineken Prize for Environmental Sciences from the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences; the 2008 International Prize for Biology from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science; the Ecological Society of America’s Cooper Award and MacArthur Award; the Botanical Society of America’s Centennial Award; the Princeton Environmental Prize; J. S. Guggenheim Fellow, and he is an elected member of the National Academy of Science. Caption: David Tilman through the years, in 1976; in 1967 as a freshman at the University of Michigan; and today.
A synthesis of work on the evolutionary origins of biodiversity, on the impacts of biodiversity on ecosystem functioning and on mechanisms of multi-species coexistence suggests a simple unifying hypothesis: that the same interspecific tradeoffs that lead to speciation also cause species to coexist, and cause a strong dependence of ecosystem functioning on biodiversity. This “Universal Tradeoff Hypothesis” suggests a surprisingly tight linkage among evolutionary, population and ecosystem processes. It also suggests that the loss of biodiversity, whether from species extinctions, community simplification, or loss of genetic variation within populations, can have serious implications for global environmental sustainability.
Host: Professor Annette Ostling
A Rackham Centennial Alumni Lecture
The U-M Horace H. Rackham School of Graduate Studies is organizing the Rackham Centennial Alumni Lectures as part of its 100th anniversary celebration in 2012 to showcase the intellectual legacy of the university’s graduate community.
Coffee and cookies will be served at 4 p.m.
Location: 1210 Chemistry