Swanne Gordon

Assistant Professor of Biology
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    • Washington University
    • CB 1137
    • One Brookings Drive
    • St. Louis, MO 63130-4899
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    Swanne Gordon is an evolutionary biologist and behavioral ecologist whose research is built around the underlying question: why is there diversity in nature, and how is it maintained?

    Her work is interdisciplinary and focuses on the evolution and maintenance of color polymorphisms in warning coloration, rapid evolution, and the interaction between sex linkage and adaptation. To study these topics, she uses a combination of field, laboratory, mathematical, and behavioral experiments. She has two main study systems: the wood tiger moth Arctia plantaginis, and the Trinidadian guppy Poecilia reticulata. Her research is interdisciplinary and involves collaborations with multiple molecular and theoretical biologists. Prior to her appointment at Washington University, Gordon was an Academy of Finland Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Jyväskylä. She earned her doctorate at the University of California, Riverside.

    Her research centers on three main areas:

    (1) The evolution and maintenance of colour polymorphisms in warning coloration

    (2) Rapid evolution

    (3) Sex linkage and adaptation. 

    Hold That Thought Podcast

    Resilience: a summer 2020 case study

    Field ecologist and Assistant Professor of Biology Swanne Gordon explains how her summer research and mentorship plans evolved amidst the pandemic.