E&E Webinar: Darwin comes to Town: evolution in Urban environments


Menno Schilthuizen is an evolutionary biologist with the Naturalis Biodiversity Center in Leiden, the Netherlands. He is also an active science writer and speaker. His latest book is Darwin Comes to Town; How the Urban Jungle Drives Evolution (Quercus / Picador, 2018). In this talk, which is aimed at a general audience, he will explain how rapid adaptation may be helping in the assemblage of novel, urban ecosystems in cities worldwide.


Menno Schilthuizen is a Dutch ecologist and evolutionary biologist. He studies the diversification of groups of closely-related species in land snails and beetles, and the questions of how and why different body-shapes evolve rapidly in such evolutionary ‘radiations’. He obtained his PhD from Leiden University in 1994, did two postdoctoral stints at Wageningen University and was an associate professor at the Institute for Tropical Biology and Conservation in Malaysian Borneo for several years. Besides his scientific career, he is an active populariser of biodiversity science. He had written four well-received books: Frogs, Flies & Dandelions: the making of species; The Loom of Life: unravelling ecosystems, Nature’s Nether Regions and, most recently, Darwin Comes to Town.