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Philip Crowley

Research Interests:
Evolutionary ecology
Mathematical Biology
Game theory
Cooperation and conflict

Ph.D. Michigan State Univ., 1975


My students and I address a broad range of issues in ecology, especially evolutionary ecology, in an effort to understand the structure and dynamics of ecological populations and communities, life histories, and underlying behavioral mechanisms.  The students conduct mainly empirical studies in a diverse array of systems and organisms (see below) and often collaborate with me in developing related models.  Most of my own work is theoretical, with recent focus on game theory, sex ratios, disease models, and metapopulations.  Students interested in gaining experience with a mix of empirical and modeling work are especially encouraged to apply for graduate study.  Highly motivated undergraduate researchers are also welcomed into the lab, often collaborating with one or more of the graduate students.  Though some of us and some of our individual projects may exclusively use theoretical or empirical approaches, a goal of the group is to help tighten connections between theoretical and empirical work in ecology.

Current graduate students and projects (* = jointly advised with another faculty member)

  • Aviv Brokman: Bet hedging theory (PhD)
  • Luc Dunoyer: Ecological engineering, ecology, and regeneration of stream crayfish (PhD)
  • Kaylynne Glover: Human reproductive strategies (PhD)
  • Allyssa Kilanowski: Stream metapopulation dynamics (PhD)
  • Brittany Slabach*: Social structure and dynamics of re-introduced elk (PhD)
  • Stephen Zumdick: Honeybee foraging and pollination of goldenrod (MS)

Recent graduate students and projects (* = jointly advised)

  • Diego Cuadros-Rubio*: HIV prevalence, link to malaria—modeling statistical analysis (PhD 2011)
  • Mary Hart*: Cooperation and conflict in the mating system of a hermaphroditic seabass (PhD 2011)
  • Nathan Klar: Size distributions, spatial structure and social systems of crayfish (MS 2010)
  • Deric Miller*: Tragedy of the commons and plant root growth (MS 2014)
  • Megan Poulette*: Ecosystem dynamics and effects of shrub invaders on savanna trees (PhD 2012)
  • Yoriko Saeki*: The size-number tradeoff in broods of a polyembryonic wasp (PhD 2012)
  • Tim Sesterhenn: The ecological and life-history implications of injury (a damselfly) (PhD 2011)
  • Kausalya Shenoy: Endocrine disruptors, male signaling and mating success (guppies) (PhD 2012)
  • Christopher Stieha*: Metapopulation dynamics and maintenance of sex (a liverwort) (PhD 2012)
  • John Treanor: Brucellosis dynamics and Yellowstone bison (PhD 2012)