Dr. David Swofford Joins NESCent


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Dr. Swofford comes to NESCent and Duke from Florida State University, where he has been for the last six years. He says, “I had many wonderful colleagues at FSU, whom I was sorry to leave, but this position provides me with the opportunity to focus on the things I do best and enjoy doing.”

His role in the IGSP and NESCent will be to continue his outstanding work in developing the theory and practical applications of computational approaches to phylogenetic questions, and to collaborate with other scholars on projects that leverage this expertise. Dr. Swofford has a long-standing relationship with Duke; while at the Smithsonian Insitution he had an adjunct faculty appointment at Duke. He lectured in phylogenetics and systematics courses, and will be teaching at Duke again through IGSP. "We're delighted to have Dave at Duke, because he brings absolutely unparalleled expertise in phylogenetic methods and their increasingly diverse applications. We're extremely fortunate to have Dave as a colleague, and look forward to interacting with him on a wide range of projects," says Greg Wray, the Director of the IGSP Center for Evolutionary Genomics.

Dr. Swofford has already participated in several NESCent activities. He is collaborating with Mark Holder and former NESCent Sabbatical Scholar Paul Lewis on a new program: PHYCAS. He is also part of Arlin Stoltzfus’ working group “Evolutionary Informatics” which is developing standards for data formatting to increasing interoperability of various software packages. He says that one of the things that made this position attractive to him was the opportunity to interact with the many scientists who come to NESCent.

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