American Society of Naturalists

A membership society whose goal is to advance and to diffuse knowledge of organic evolution and other broad biological principles so as to enhance the conceptual unification of the biological sciences.

Paulo Guimarães

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I grew up in Campinas, a city near São Paulo, Brazil. Since I was a child I was interested in animals. I went to the undergrad course in Biological Sciences at Unicamp. I got particularly interested in plant-animal interactions and this led me to do my research stage at Mauro Galetti's lab and my Masters under supervision of José R. Trigo. Meanwhile, I became interested in the complexity theory and the use of approaches derived from Physics in Ecology. I studied the structure of ecological networks during my PhD under supervision of Sérgio F. dos Reis and co-supervised by Marcus de Aguiar, Pedro Jordano and Jordi Bascompte. After my PhD, I went to a postdoc on physics of complex networks at Marcus's lab. In 2008, I went to a postdoc on coevolutionary dynamics in species networks at John Thompson's lab at Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, at UC–Santa Cruz. Since 2009, I have been an Assistant Professor at Universidade de São Paulo.

I became a scientist because I enjoy learning how things work in nature. I also really like to study and discuss ideas with people and science is a wonderful opportunity to do that.

The main question I'm working on is how patterns of ecological interaction shape and are shaped by ecological and evolutionary processes. In my lab, we combine ecological data, mathematical modeling, and quantitative methods derived from statistical mechanics such as complex network approach to address this question.

When I am not working or having good time with family and friends, I love to travel. My hobby is to feed birds such as hummingbirds, bananaquits, sayaca tanagers and plain parakeets in my apartment balcony. I used to be a jiu-jitsu practitioner for several years, but now I just watch it on TV.

For me being a member of ASN means being part of a group of people focused in learning the organizing principles shaping the biological evolution. In this sense, I believe ASN is a unique opportunity for information interchange among researchers all around the world.

Universidade de São Paulo, Assistant Professor
ASN member since 2008