Samuel Scarpino

From Santa Fe Institute Events Wiki


Sam Scarpino

My name is Sam Scarpino and I am 3rd year PhD student in the Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior Department at the University of Texas at Austin.


Main Interests

I am broadly interested in two lines of research: population genetics and epidemiology. The two fields are highly connected in both their methodologies and approach to questions, but thus far I've only managed to work on them independently (patterns of variation on new sex chromosomes, evolution of chromosome number in flowering plants, signatures of sexual selection on recombining sex chromosomes, social networks of primates and disease transmission, influenza surveillance, SO-H1N1...). My pie-in-the-sky goal is to integrate the two fields into a single line of research, something I'd be keen to think about during the CSSS.

Side Interests

Climbing (I will surely do some while in SF so let me know if you are interested), soccer, experimental geography, backpacking


I have experience in statistical, network, and population genetic modeling, a strong grounding in evolutionary biology, genetics, and graph theory and usually don't go 24 hours without working in [R]. In addition, I have spent a lot of time thinking about optimization and how to use data to better build and parametrize models. In my spare time I do some field and lab work, the picture is of me collecting fish near Veracruz, Mexico.

Hopes for CSSS

I am looking forward to gaining new skills and learning how the skills I already have can be put to use on a wide-array of problems. I also know that collaborative environments are exciting places to work and I'm sure to gain a wealth from the other researchers in the CSSS.

Project ideas

Two side projects that I would be excited to take up are how changes in human land use patterns and urbanization impact disease emergence and transmission and how to extract pertinent epidemiological information from the genetic sequence data of hosts/pathogens.