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NIMBioS Seminar Series

In conjunction with the interdisciplinary activities of the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS), a seminar series on topics in mathematical biology will be hosted at NIMBioS every other Tuesday at 3:30 p.m. (unless otherwise noted) in the Hallam Auditorium, Room 206, Claxton Building, 1122 Volunteer Blvd. Seminar speakers will focus on their research initiatives at the interface of mathematics and many areas of the life sciences. Light refreshments will be served in Room 205 beginning 30 minutes before each talk. Faculty and students from across the UT community are welcome to join us.

H. Kokko photo.

Time/Date: Tuesday, November 11, 2014, 3:30 p.m.*
Location: Room 206, Claxton Building, 1122 Volunteer Blvd.
Speaker: Dr. Hanna Kokko, Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies, Univ. of Zurich; NIMBioS Postdoctoral Fellows Invited Distinguished Visitor
Topic: Males exist. Does it matter?
Abstract: Natural selection is a shortsighted process: it acts far more strongly on the individual than the group, thus (to take species' long term persistence as an example of a group- or population-level benefit) selection is not expected to equip species with best possible long-term persistence or best possible population growth. Here I show that sexual reproduction in particular is prone to the ‘tragedy of the commons', predicting unwise use of essential resources for reproduction. I will draw examples from birds as well as fish, as well as from fundamental issues about male and female evolution: why do individuals specialize in producing sperm and eggs, and is this a 'wise' way to organize reproduction?

*Join us for refreshments at 3 p.m. in Room 205.

Seminar Flyer (pdf)

NIMBioS seminars are available for viewing via live streaming during the talk and are archived for later viewing on NIMBIoS' YouTube channel.

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For more information about this and other NIMBioS Seminars, visit

H. Kokko.