Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology
Deutscher Platz 6
Public key (GnuPG)
If one were to glance over my papers, two major recurring themes are
apparent: evolution and information. It is quite amazing to me that
I never conciously decided to focus on studying information - I simply
encountered it in almost every one of my research projects. Once this
was discovered, I am now taking a more active approach into studying
the evolution of information processing.
My main interest in biology is studying the process of evolution.
It is arguable whether the process of evolution existed before there
was life on earth. What is less arguable is that it was different from
the process which exists today. This is one example where one can see
that evolution changes over time. I am interested in studying these
changes - when, how, and why they happen. Questions which are linked
to this subject are questions concerning the origin of life, the origin
of multicellularity and of (eu)-social behaviour in animals, and of
the origins and maintenance of sexual reproduction.
How do organisms transit from competing in the process of evolution,
to become a new organism in which they cooperate? This happened many
times in Nature. Multi-cellularity evolved separately many times (plants
and animals are two of these). The same happened withwasps, termites,
and many other animals which formed eu-social groups. Some say that
similar processes where at work in the creation of the eucariotic cells,
and in the formation of cells in general.