With a legacy in leadership and excellence, EEB at Princeton is recognized worldwide as a unique department where innovative theories help us understand and manage real world biological systems. Our faculty members engage some of the most urgent societal problems of the day, including how climate change is stressing ecosystems to an unimaginable degree, the public’s misunderstanding of evolution in the age of science and technology, the dynamics of disease in a world where people and pathogens move and evolve with unprecedented ease, and the effects of biodiversity loss on the ability of ecosystems to provide for the future.
Since its inception the department has been a global leader in transforming how we understand and manage the larger biological world around us. From 1965-72 Robert MacArthur first placed Princeton at the forefront of innovation by founding the field of theoretical ecology. Robert May followed in MacArthur’s footsteps and strengthened Princeton’s leading position in this emerging field, developing ecology and evolutionary biology into a conceptual area of study with considerable applied relevance.
In our department, evolution is the theme that unites us and theory and empiricism is a style that guides us. We have a departmental culture that is highly praised – one of intellectual openness, collegiality, and collaborative spirit. The resulting interactions among faculty, postdocs, graduate and undergraduate students provide a trusting environment that supports the emergence of cutting-edge ideas and the capacity for continued transformation of our scientific field.
Chair of the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology