Dean Adams


I am interested in the evolution of the multivariate phenotype. To this end I examine patterns of phenotypic diversity, and what ecological and historical processes are responsible it. My work lies at the interface of micro- and macroevolution, and combines empirical observation with theoretical and statistical tools to identify morpholgoical patterns and assess biological processes. My work focuses primarily on plethodontid salamanders, though I also study other taxonomic systems. A long-term goal of this research is to use a comparative evolutionary perspective to examine the relative importance of ecological and historical processes in the evolution of phenotypic diversification and the regulation of community structure (see Current Research Page for more details).

In addition to my empirical work, I develop new theoretical and analytical techniques for quantifying the multiviarate phenotype, and for elucidating patterns of phenotypic evolution and change. Current work involves developing methods for quantifying trajectories of phenotypic evolution in multivariate morphospace. Other work focuses on developing methods for understanding phylogenetic rates of phenotypic evolution (see Current Research Page for more details).

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Wordle from publication abstracts & keywords (2012-present)