European Society for Evolutionary Biology (ESEB)

Some History and General Information

The European Society for Evolutionary Biology (ESEB) was founded on 28 August 1987 in Basel (Switzerland), with about 450 evolutionary biologists attending the inaugural congress of the Society; Arthur Cain became the Society’s first president. The founding of the ESEB was closely linked to the launching of the Society’s journal, the Journal of Evolutionary Biology, with Stephen C. Stearns as the first Editor in Chief, and the first issue appearing in January 1988. See the editorial opening of the journal (or view the pdf); see also Steve Stearns’ account of the early days of the ESEB.

ESEB aims at supporting the study of organic evolution. Beside publishing the Journal of Evolutionary Biology and co-publishing Evolution Letters, the society organizes a biannual congress and supports other events to promote advances in evolutionary biology. ESEB also supports activities to promote a scientific view of organic evolution in research and education.

Since its foundation, the ESEB has grown and matured, with currently more than 2000 members, while the Journal of Evolutionary Biology became a major journal in the field. This reflects the growth of the evolutionary biology community in Europe and beyond, which the Society helped to foster.

The success of the ESEB would not be possible without many members who devoted their time and effort to the Society and the journal: elected officers, congress organizers, members of the council, committees, and the editorial boards of the Journal of Evolutionary Biology and Evolution Letters.

Constitution & Bylaws

The English version of the society’s constitution is available here: ESEB Constitution 2018 (EN). If you would like to receive the Dutch version, please send a request to the ESEB office (

The ESEB Bylaws are available here: ESEB_Bylaws

Policy Plans

Annual Activities Reports

Annual Financial Reports

General Members’ Meeting

All members of the Society are invited to the General members’ Meeting, which takes place during the ESEB congress. The meeting minutes are publicly available: