ESEB Presidents’ Award

In 2011, the ESEB Council decided to institute a new award, to be presented for the first time at the Joint Congress on Evolutionary Biology in 2012. This award is intended to recognise outstanding contributions to evolutionary biology by a mid-career scientist. The award is to be in the gift of the three Presidents in post at the time (Past-President, President and President-Elect) and so will be known as the Presidents’ Award. The prize is awarded once every six years and the recipient will give an address at the Joint Evolution Congress on Evolutionary Biology in the same year.

Presidents’ Award 2018

ESEB is pleased to announce the winner of the 2018 Presidents’ Award: Professor Loeske Kruuk.

Loeske will give a plenary at the II Joint Congress on Evolutionary Biology in Montpellier in August 2018.

Picture of Professor Loeske Kruuk
Professor Loeske Kruuk

Biography: I completed a PhD in population genetics at the University of Edinburgh with Nick Barton, in 1997, and then did a postdoc at the Universities of Cambridge and Edinburgh. I started a Royal Society University Research Fellowship at the University of Edinburgh in 2000 and became Professor of Evolutionary Ecology at Edinburgh there in 2009. In 2012, I took up an Australian Research Council Future Fellowship at the Australian National University, Canberra.
My research aims to understand how environmental conditions affect evolutionary processes in natural populations. My postdoc on a long-term study of red deer initiated my interest in the application of quantitative genetic mixed model approaches previously restricted to animal breeding analyses to address evolutionary questions. One of my main aims is to understand how the quantitative genetic basis of phenotypic variation and natural selection determine individual fitness and life histories in the wild. My other core interests are the effects of climate change, senescence, phenotypic plasticity, sexual selection, inbreeding depression and maternal effects. Most of my work has been on wild vertebrate populations – in particular, using studies with long-term records and relatedness information – but I’ve also worked with collaborators on a range of lab, domestic and plant populations. I’ve been lucky enough to supervise many excellent postgraduate students and post-doctoral fellows.

Presidents’ Award 2012

We are delighted to announce that the recipient for the first Presidents’ Award has been Professor Adam Eyre-Walker of the University of Sussex.

Picture of Professor Adam Eyre-Walker
Professor Adam Eyre-Walker

Adam Eyre-Walker is one of the world’s leading researchers in the field of molecular and genome evolution. Adam was one of the pioneers of the use of DNA sequence databases to extract useful information about the patterns and processes involved in the evolution of genomes. He has consistently been an innovator in making creative use of the information extracted in this way, combining bioinformatic methods with evolutionary models based on population genetics theory. He established his reputation by his work on the evolutionary forces affecting DNA base composition and codon usage, and the use of species comparison of gene sequences to infer the rate of occurrence of deleterious mutations. He has subsequently developed new methods for estimating the frequency of adaptive changes to protein sequences, and for estimating the fitness effects of nonsynonymous mutations, by combining information on within-species polymorphism and between-species sequence divergence. He has an impressive record of publications, mostly in leading journals, and has trained many excellent postgraduate students and post-doctoral fellows.

The Presidents at that time,
Siv Andersson, Brian Charlesworth and Roger Butlin