Presentations for the launch of CCE

As part of the launch of the Centre for Computational Evolution on the 21 April 2016, a mini-symposium was held with speakers across New Zealand and from Australia who are using these mathematical models for evolution and ecology to study a growing list of fundamental questions. This includes how diseases spread, how populations spread and adapt to their environment to the evolution of culture and language. The speakers also discussed how this area of research has evolved and what challenges lay ahead. 

Speaker: Prof Alexei Drummond
Presentation: Darwin's computer: Modelling evolution from fossil records to infectious diseases. 

What would have Darwin used a computer for? Prof Alexei Drummond, director of Centre for Computational Evolution explains how evolutionary models and ideas can help to understand a wide range of topics.


Speaker: Prof Nigel French (Massey University)
Presentation: Evolutionary modelling and control of food pathogens

Prof Nigel French uses evolutionary tools to solve real world problems, and takes us through how his group determined how campylobacteriosis spread and through this enabled policy changes that reduced cases by 50% and saved the economy an estimated $50M per annum since 2007. 


Speaker: Prof Mike Steel (Canterbury University)
Presentation: Darwin's regret

Prof Mike Steel takes us through a brief overview of how mathematics and related fields have helped shape the study of evolution and some of the new directions and challenges for the field. 


Speaker: Prof Allen Rodrigo (Australian National University)
Presentation: The Art of the Null: Neutral models in computational evolutionary biology

Prof Allen Rodigo explains how mundane processes or 'null models' in the family of evolutionary processes are far more interesting than you think. 


Speaker: Prof David Bryant (University of Otago)
Presentation: Next generation genetics using last generation's mathematics

Prof David Bryant wonders if the coalescent theory and coalecent theroy practise is perhaps fundamentally limited. It may be time to go old school. 


Speaker: Assoc Prof Quentin Atkinson 
Presentation: From viruses to languages - how computational methods from biology are revolutionising the way we study human culture

Assoc Prof Quentin Atkinson shows how tools developed in the Centre for Computational Evolution to solve problems in biology and epidemiology are bieng productively adapted to shed light on human cultural evolution in domains as varied as language, religion and the fortunes of nation states.