Amitabh Joshi


Amitabh Joshi


I was trained as a geneticist but switched to evolutionary biology for my doctoral work.

I do not view science as a career, I view it the way a classical musician would view music.

I am interested in the evolutionary process per se, rather than this or that taxon or trait complex. As a corollary, I am primarily interested in conceptualizations, not organisms. To me, understanding organisms is a means to refining our conceptualizations, not vice versa.

Our lab uses experimental evolution/ecology approaches, involving long-term selection and population dynamics studies of laboratory systems of well-replicated fruitfly populations to address questions in life-history evolution, density-dependent selection and adaptations to crowding, evolution of demographic parameters and population stability, and dynamic and stability responses of spatially structured and unstructured populations to various ecological and evolutionary perturbations. We primarily do experimental research, but also do some theory, both analytical and simulations-based. We are world-leaders in the study of density-dependent selection and its role in affecting popualtion dynamics and stability.

I also work on core conceptual issues in evolutionary theory, including non-genic inheritance, redefining selection and Darwinian fitness, and evaluating the claims of Extended Evolutionary Synthesis proponents, as part of the informal 'Foundations of Genetics and Evolution Group' (FOGEG), together with my colleague Prof. TNC Vidya, and our alumni, Profs. NG Prasad (IISER Mohali) and Sutirth Dey (IISER Pune). This work has major elements of the history/sociology and philosophy of science to it.

My other serious interests include poetry in Urdu, Persian and English, philosophy, history and military science.