Edeline Gagnon

A photo of Edeline Gagnon
Phone number: 
(519) 824-4120 x 52860
SSC 1455

I am a botanist and evolutionary biologist who is fascinated by plant diversity and morphology, and have always also been intrigued by why certain plants grow in some places and not others (also known as the science of biogeography!) My main research interest lies in understanding the evolution and ecology of plants, which I do by developing carefully curated phylogenies and accurate taxonomic, geographic and ecological datasets. It’s not just about “big data”, but also about “quality data”.

Untangling the patterns of global distribution of plant taxonomic and ecological diversity can help us understand what are the current and historical processes responsible for these patterns. This is vital for predicting what may happen to ecosystems in the future, in the light of climate change. Furthermore, ecological studies can help with the problem of food security, by studying how wild crop relatives are able to withstand a wider range of environmental stressors, in comparison to domesticated species. My research has led me to specialize and become versatile in both temperate and tropical fieldwork, molecular biology labwork, as well as skills in bioinformatics, phylogenomics and multivariate statistical analyses.