Evolutionary potential in natural populations

11-Apr-2010 - 14-Apr-2010

Evolutionary potential in natural populations

Organizers: Trine Bilde, Torsten Nygaard Kristensen, Volker Loeschcke,
Dept. Biological Sciences, Aarhus University, Ny Munkegade Building
8000 Aarhus C, Denmark.

Venue: Sandbjerg Estate, Sandbjergvej 102, 6400 Sønderborg, Denmark

Scientific content:
There is increasing focus on the effect of environmental change on
survival and sustainability of natural populations. The ability to
adapt to changing ecological conditions and track environmental
crucially relies on standing genetic variation in the population and
hence on evolutionary potential. However, processes that maintain
variation in natural populations are enigmatic and poorly understood,
and this constrains our ability to understand population responses to
environmental impacts.

For this meeting we bring together researchers with a primary focus
on evolutionary processes in wild populations and processes affecting
evolutionary potential. We have organized three main topics that will
be addressed:

1) Studying evolution in wild populations using molecular and
quantitative genetic tools.
2) Understanding the processes that lead to loss / generate and
genetic variation in natural populations
3) What constrains evolution in natural populations? – plasticity,
genetic and environmental constrains

List of confirmed invited speakers:

Ary Hoffmann, University of Melbourne, Australia
Anna Qvarnström, Uppsala University, Sweden,
Ben Sheldon, University of Oxford, UK,
Charles W. Fox, University of Kentucky, USA
Ilka Hanski, Helsinki University, Finland,
Jacintha Ellers, Vrije University Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Jon Slate, University of Sheffield, UK
Mikkel Schierup, Aarhus University, Denmark
Ruth Shaw, University of Minnesota, USA
Tom Tregenza, University of Exeter, UK

Ph.D. course: Ph.D. students can attend the conference as a 5 ECTS
Ph.D. course. Students will receive a compendium with original
articles on current research within the topic. They will further be
required to write an essay relating to one of the main topics. Full
attendance of the entire meeting, preparation through background
and submission of an essay will be required to obtain 5 ECTS.

Funding: Funding from Nordic and EU sources are available to cover
board and accommodation for the conference, participants must cover
travel costs themselves although we may be able to cover travel
costs for
participants from the Nordic countries (through the NordForsk program
‘Nordic Network for Evolutionary Conservation Biology’). Depending
on the final budget and sources of funding priority might be given
to participants from countries contributing to the EU ESF programme
ThermAdapt and Nordic and Baltic countries.

Attendance: apply before 15 January 2010 to Trine Bilde
trine.bilde@biology.au.dk Participants that apply for a contributed
should indicate in which of the main topics they prefer to speak.

Time schedule: Travel should be planned with arrival during the
afternoon/evening on 11 April. Dinner will be provided on 11 April and
the conference will end after lunch on April 14.

Travel: The closest airport is the domestic Sønderborg Airport which
can be reached from Copenhagen Airport. There are also train
from Copenhagen Airport.

Billund Airport is relatively close and has many excellent connections
to European cities; you might consider Billund rather than Copenhagen
Airport. Another option is Hamburg Airport. We will try to arrange
pickup transportation from local airports.

Specific and detailed information on how to reach
Sandbjerg Conference Centre can be found here: