Devin Drown

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Polyhymnia 12

[last name] [at]


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Devin gc 1791.jpg

I'm a fourth year graduate student at Washing State University. My research interests are focused on coevolutionary interactions, particularly host-parasite interactions. I’m interested in the effect of dispersal (or migration) on coevolutionary interactions. Most of my past research has been in molecular ecology, but since at WSU I've also been working on theory work relating to my thesis. I'm also interested in modeling disease dynamics, specifically vector transmitted virus and looking at the effect of competition on virus diversity.

Outside of research, I'm really into board games (Settlers of Catan, Ticket to Ride, etc). Hope we can spend some downtime exploring some geeky fun strategies. Look at the Board_Game_List to see what folks are bringing to Santa Fe this summer. I also love to travel and just got back from New Zealand (doing fieldwork). I'm excited about meeting such a diverse set of researches.


Answers to questions

  1. What are your main interests? Feel free to include a "pie in the sky" big idea!
    • For my dissertation research, I am broadly interested in population genetics and coevolutionary systems, which represent a combination of my previous research experiences. I initially became interested in host-parasite systems as an undergraduate. In graduate school, I was introduced to population level processes. Together these different influences have given me my current focus. My dissertation research aims to bridge the gap between studies examining macroevolutionary patterns and microevolutionary processes of coevolution. I wish to understand how microevolutionary processes, such as migration, lead to host specialization in parasites.
  2. What sorts of expertise can you bring to the group?
    • Being a biologist, I have a solid grounding in population genetics and evolutionary theory. At the same time, I do know how to program, but it’s not my expertise.
  3. What do you hope to get out of the CSSS?
    • My background and general approach to science has mainly been a one reductionist point of view. I’ve been taught to try and distill any problem down into the simplest components and then build up from there. I’m hoping to gain an understanding of alternative ways of solving problems or at least viewing problems.
  4. Do you have any possible projects in mind for the CSSS?
    • Over the past couple of years I have been working on models of disease transmission. I used both agent based as well as more classic SIR based modeling techniques. However, none of these attempts have incorporated any real spatial elements to them. I would like to work on a disease model that is either modular or has enough inherent hierarchy such that a spatial component could be incorporated.