Population geneticists spend most of their time doing one of two things: describing the genetic structure of populations or theorizing on the evolutionary forces acting on populations. On a good day, these two activities mesh and true insights emerge.
– JH Gillespie, 1998
Our group is carrying out both empirical and theoretical research. Our main interest is to try to infer the relative importance of the factors that have shaped the present day genetic structure and variation of populations. One specific aspect that has interested us lately is the extent of local adaptation at different level of biological integration (phenotype, transcriptome, genome and genes). We currently work on different biological systems: the shepherd’s purse (Capsella bursa-pastoris) and its relatives, Norway spruce and other spruce species, birches across Eurasia and the Euphrate’s poplar, a poplar species adapted to drought and found from Xinjiang in the East to Morocco in the West. Most of our theoretical work stems from questions encountered during the development of these and other empirical projects.