William Fink

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William Fink

Professor Emeritus and Curator Emeritus
Museum of Zoology

Office Location(s): 1043 Ruthven Museums Building
Phone: 734.764.9928
Fax: 734.763.4080
Fink webpage
Fish Division, U-M Museum of Zoology
View Curriculum Vitae

  • Affiliation(s)
    • Museum of Zoology
  • Fields of Study
    • Phylogenetics and ichthyology
  • About

    Academic background

    Dr. Fink received his PhD from George Washington University in 1976; his dissertation on deep-sea stomiiform fishes was directed by Dr. Stanley Weitzman of the Smithsonian Institution. He then joined the faculty of Harvard University where he was also curator of fishes in the Museum of Comparative Zoology. At the University of Michigan he is a Professor of Biology and Curator of Fishes in the Museum of Zoology. Dr. Fink is a past President of the Society of Systematic Biologists, former Editor of Copeia, Founding Fellow of the Hennig Society, and was awarded the LS&A Excellence in Education Award in 1999.

    Research interests

    Dr. Fink's research interests include biology and systematics of fishes, particularly Neotropical species, higher classification, and theory of systematics and biogeography. He is currently working on phylogenetics of piranhas, including the evolution of growth patterns and trophic specializations, and the historical biogeography of the group. He is also continuing his studies of ostariophysan fish relationships. In his phylogenetic analyses, emphasis is being placed on non-traditional characters such as ontogenetic trajectories and morphometrics.


    BIO 116 Biology of Sex: The main goal of this course is to help students understand the nature of science and how to evaluate the quality of science. Our focus is evolutionary biology, and specifically its role in helping us understand the biology of sex (or sometimes lack of sex) in the lives of a wide scope of diverse organisms. Among the topics examined are developmental biology, endocrine systems, sexual adaptation, and the evolutionary costs and benefits of sex. We examine a number of facts and fallacies about sex, including aspects of human sexual biology.

  • Research Areas of Interest
    • Phylogenetics and ichthyology
  • Graduate student
    • Jeremy Wright