Priya Iyer has been awarded DST grant to pursue her postdoctoral work

Congratulations to Priya Iyer, who has been awarded DST Women Scientist grant to pursue her postdoctoral research work. The grant is for three years, and is likely to start from Jan 2018. Priya did her integrated MSc in Mathematics from IIT Kanpur, PhD in Biology from Stanford, and spent some time as a fellow at IISER Pune.

Priya has wide range of interests, from studying animals in the wild to building theoretical models to education. We are delighted that she will work in our lab.

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Winter travel and conferences

A bunch of us are traveling for collaborations and conferences this winter.

Sumithra Sankaran and Krishnapriya Tamma are currently in France for several weeks to continue to our collaboration with Sonia Kefi and her lab at Montpellier, France. This is the last trip under our grant from Indo-French Centre for Applied Mathematics.

Sumithra Sankaran, Krishnapriya Tamma and Sabiha Majumder will be presenting their research work at the annual meeting of British Ecological Society 2017 at Ghent, Belgium, from 11th December to 15th December.

Myself, Sabiha Majumder, Priya Iyer and Jitesh Jhawar presented out work at a conference at IIT-Guwahati on Complex Dynamical Systems and Applications (CDSA). IIT-Guwahati is such an amazing campus and weather is fantastic. We must visit more frequently!

Several of our lab members attend international conferences and workshops this summer

As I mentioned in the previous post, our postdoc is attending Ecological Society of America Annual Meeting in Portland this week. In addition, our lab had presence in various other international conferences and workshops this summer.

Four PhD students from our lab presented their work at the conference “Mathematical models in ecology and evolution” (MMEE) held at London in July 2017.

  1. Jaideep Joshi, final year student who has already submitted his thesis, presented his work on “Demographic noise and the evolution of tag-based cooperation”.
  2. Sumithra Sankaran, finishing her 4th year of PhD, presented her work on “Demographic noise promotes bistability in ecosystems”
  3. Jitesh Jhawar, finishing his 3rd year of PhD, presented his work on “Role of stochasticity in the dynamics of fish schools”
  4. Aakanksha Rathore, finishing her 2nd year of PhD, presented her work on “Spatial dynamics of Blackbuck herds”

Three of the students, Sumithra, Jitesh and Aakanksha, also attended BES organised one day symposium on movement ecology in London.

After the conference, Aakanksha went to visit Dr Colin Torney at University of Glasgow.

Jaideep went on to Puerto Rico to attend a workshop on tropical forest ecology.

Student trips were supported by funds from Indian Institute of Science (MHRD) and a grant from Royal society to visit Dr Torney’s lab.

Krishnapriya Tamma has been awarded National-Post Doc Fellowship from SERB to work in our lab

Congratulations to Dr Krishnapriya Tamma for the National-Post Doc Fellowship from SERB to work in our lab.

Krishnapriya will work on analysing various remotely sensed images of vegetation to understand and to predict tipping point phenomena natural forests across the world.

Priya Tamma is not really new to our lab. She was already on a postdoctoral position in our lab from April 2016. This fellowship gives her additional three years to continue her work. This will also allow her to pursue newer directions of research apart from primary focus areas of our lab. Apart from global scale analyses of vegetation, she is deeply interested in understanding biogeography, ecosystem patterns and conservation issues n North-Eastern India.

Before joining our lab, Priya Tamma did her PhD from our neighboring institution NCBS, in the lab of Prof Uma Ramakrishnan, on biogeography of Himalayan region. Check our her Google scholar profile to see her interesting publications.

Welcome to a new UG student, bid adieu to two.

We welcome Prashastha Mishra, a student of biology from IISER Pune, to our lab for her final year research project! She will be working with Krishnapriya Tamma, a postdoc in our lab, to analyse remotely sensed vegetation patterns.

We bid adieu to two UG students: Aakash Sengupta defended his Masters thesis titled “Transitions in Collective Behavioural States in Animal Groups” in Dec 2016. Kushal Appilineni, an IISc UG student from physics department, did his BS project with a bunch of cool analytical calculations of a vegetation pattern formation model. He has moved onto work with Shashi Thutupalli at NCBS for his Masters thesis.

Nikunj Goel wins Volterra Award and Damman Award at ESA 2016

Nikunj Goel has won two awards at the Ecological Society of America (ESA) 2016 Annual Meeting, Volterra Award by the Theoretical Ecology section and Ton Damman award from the Vegetation section. He was given these for his excellent presentation titled “Spatiotemporal dynamics of savanna-forest distribution”. Both of these awards are given to best graduate student presentation at the Annual meetings of ESA.

Congratulations to Nikunj!

Nikunj graduated with BSc(Research) from IISc in 2015 and worked in our lab for his final year project working on early warning signals of financial meltdowns that resulted in a publication. He is currently a PhD student with Dr Carla Staver at Yale University. We continue to collaborate after he has moved to Yale and I serve on his PhD thesis committee.