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Analytical Paleobiology Workshop

Icon SummerSchoolHosting the Analytical Paleobiology Workshop 2022

The Analytical Paleobiology Workshop is offered annually in boreal summers and hosted by a different institution each year. The 1st edition of the workshop was held on July 19 – August 15 2018 at the Florida Museum of Natural History (University of Florida, Gainesville, FL USA). The workshop is dedicated to analytical training of graduate students in paleobiology and hopes to emulate the success of the Fossilworks Intensive Workshop in Analytical Palaeobiology developed and coordinated by John Alroy (Macquarie University). The workshop was held at NCEAS between 2005 and 2009 and at Macquarie University between 2010 and 2015, with support provided at various times by the Australian Research Council, NCEAS, NESCent, the Palaeontological Association, the Paleontological Society, and the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology. The summer workshop played a critical role in training a generation of paleontology graduate students in analytical methods, and its legacy is apparent in any survey of recent paleontological publications. Thanks to John Alroy’s vision and dedicated service, the original workshop represented an extraordinarily fruitful training program. We are thrilled at this opportunity to revive such a critical initiative. The Analytical Paleobiology Workshop is intended to be an international, community-driven initiative. We welcome your input and participation regardless of your geographic location, area of expertise, or professional status.

The school took place from August 22 to September 9, 2022.

This 3-week workshop was designed to train young paleontologists in quantitative methods and programming as well as to strengthen methodological exchange. Using the R statistical software the focus was put on quantitative methods in paleobiology. Key methods taught included diversity dynamics, extinction selectivity, phylogenetics, geometric morphometrics and species distribution modelling.

Costs for travel and accommodation were covered by the PaleoSynthesis project.

PhD students from any degree-granting institution worldwide were eligible for admission. Advanced master students and early career postdocs were also encouraged to apply. Twelve participants were allowed to take part in person after reviewers rated applications taking into account course readiness, inclusiveness, need for training resources, the material’s relevance to the applicants scientific interests, and the letter of support.

We wanted to support as many students as possible – so there also was the chance to join remotely.