Plenary speakers:

prof. IP PAN, dr hab. Tomasz Sulej

Tomasz Sulej received his PhD from Institute of Paleobiology PAS (2006) describing anatomy, variability and evolution of temnospondyl amphibian from Krasiejów. Since then, he has been researching the Triassic amphibians and reptiles, their anatomy and evolution. Dr. Sulej organized expeditions to Russia, Tunisia and Greenland and described various kind of fossils based on finding materials. He join scientific work with popularization of paleontology as a manager of Museum of Evolution and as a lecturer.

dr hab. Marcin Czarnołęski

Marcin Czarnołęski received his PhD from the Jagiellonian University (2001) applying optimal resource allocation models to explore the evolution of life history strategies in zebra mussels. Since then, Marcin has indulged in bridging theoretical evolutionary models and the empirical research of a broad range of organisms, including endophytic fungi, rotifers, plants, molluscs, insects, crustaceans, fish, lizards, mammals and birds. His current work focuses on the thermal adaptation of ectotherms and the integration of life history theory with the theory of optimal cell size. As a fellow of Fulbright and Kosciuszko Foundations, Marcin studied physiological ecology of flies and lizards at Indiana State University. Now, as an associate professor, he works at the Institute of Environmental Sciences Jagiellonian University, where he leads the Life History Evolution group.

Ph.D. Roberta Fisher

I am a Carlsberg Distinguished post-doctoral fellow working at Copenhagen University. My current research is focused on understanding the evolution of division of labour and multicellular organismality. I am using the baker’s yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a model system to understand the very first stages of cell differentiation in facultatively multicellular species. This research follows on from my PhD, where I used an experimental system with algae and comparative methods to understand the major evolutionary transition to obligate multicellularity. In my previous position, I studied the evolution of bacterial symbionts; species that form intimate associations with a variety of hosts, including animals and plants. Using comparative techniques, I showed that hosts evolve higher levels of dependence on vertically transmitted symbionts as opposed to horizontally transmitted ones. My research seeks to reveal the general principles underlying all of the major evolutionary transitions, whether it be multicellularity, symbiosis or superorganismality.