Kjetil Lysne Voje, a fellow at the 2019/20 CAS project "Evolvability: A New and Unifying Concept in Evolutionary Biology?", was awarded the prestigious ERC Starting Grant.
‘I am very excited and grateful to receive an ERC Starting Grant’, says Kjetil Lysne Voje, a researcher at the University of Oslo, about the grant that goes to talented early-career scientists.
The CAS affiliated researcher tells CAS that he interprets the award as a recognition of the results he and his collaborators have accomplished in recent years.
‘The grant allows me to establish a research group and to set aside time and resources to work on projects that it would otherwise have been difficult to do’, he says.
Patterns of evolution across long and short timescales
The aim of the project is to provide a more complete understanding of the patterns of evolutionary trait dynamics across long and short timescales, Voje explains.
‘To better connect our understanding of microevolutionary processes to patterns of evolution across longer time-scales (macroevolution), we need to improve our understanding of how observations on short and long timescales relate to each other’.
To achieve such an understanding, the project will use mathematical modelling, machine learning, and new statistical tools to analyze evolutionary time series from both extant and extinct species covering generational to million-year timescales, the researcher says, who also writes on Twitter that he will soon be looking for a postdoc and two PhDs to join the project.
‘The goal is to provide new knowledge of phenotypic evolution across time intervals where much is currently assumed, but little is known, regarding evolutionary trait dynamics’.
In other words; a natural member of the CAS project led by Thomas F. Hansen and Christophe Pelabon, a project about the preconditions for evolution; evolvability.
What did the CAS project and your stay at CAS mean for your work and career?
‘I enjoyed every minute of my time at CAS. It was highly motivating and a privilege to discuss science with some of the best evolutionary biologists in the field. There is no doubt that I developed as a researcher during my stay at CAS’, the scholar says.