SIBE, Società Italiana di Biologia Evoluzionistica - ISEB, Italian Society for Evolutionary Biology

Schools and workshops

SIBE-Irsae summer course

Phylogentics meets Population genetics

Tuesday 27 August- Sunday 01 September 2019 

FEM Campus and Botanical Garden of University of Padua

Phylogeny studies inter-specific variations and typically describes the macroveolutionary changes of organisms over long time scales; population genetics instead typically focuses on the intra-species variability and describes microevolutionary changes occurred during the relatively recent history of a population. The two disciplines are characterised by different tools and methods, and too often phylogeneticists do not understand what population geneticists do, and vice versa. With this course we aim at stimulating a dialogue and a constructive discussion between students and teachers with phylogenetics, population genetics, but also ecological backgrounds, in such a way that we can appreciate the complementary nature of these disciplines. All students should be united by the will to understand better each other’s methodological processes. The course will cover some important applications such as detection of positive selection using PAML, site frequency spectrum analysis using Sweepfinder, inference of divergence time using BEAST, inference of population past demography using Fastsimcoal.


2012 Italian workshop on phylogenetic methods and applications 

May 14-18 in Modena
Department of Biology of the
 Università di Modena e Reggio Emilia

Organised by Francesco Santini

Lecturers: John P. Huelsenbeck, Brian Moore, 
Francesco Santini, Omar Rota-Stabelli, Saverio Vicario


2011 Italian workshop on phylogenetic methods and applications 

August 29-September 1 in Asti (Italy)
ASTI STUDI SUPERIORI University campus

Organised by Francesco Santini

Lecturers: Francesco Frati, John P. Huelsenbeck, Brian Moore, 
Francesco Santini, Omar Rota-Stabelli, Saverio Vicario


2010 Italian workshop on phylogenetic methods and applications 

August 27-September 1, Abbiategrasso

Organised by Francesco Santini.

Lecturers: Michael E. AlfaroFrancesco Frati, John P. Huelsenbeck, Alessandro Minelli, 
Brian Moore, Davide Pisani, Francesco Santini, Alexandros Stamatakis


  Ferrara, December 15-16, 2012
The workshop is was organized in collaboration with the Department of Life Sciences and Biotechnogy (University of Ferrara) and the Natural History Museum of Ferrara. Six main themes were discussed: Population Genetics, Ecology, and Demography; Sexual Selection; Phylogenies, Species, and Speciation; New Technologies to Study Evolution; Adaptation; Human Evolution. For each theme, one invited speaker and one selected young partecipant were presenting their recent work.

Teaching Biology: from theory to practics
Roma Tre University, Roma
22-23 September 2011
The course, held by Prof.ssa Milena Bandiera (a genetist and teacher of 'Didactics of Biology' at the Roma Tre University), allowed participants to think and test themselves on the bases of innovation in teaching Biology (from theory to practice, the qualifying principles of teaching Biology,  and “requirements”). Two  sessions were  carried out: methodological innovation in the classroom (“active and cohoperative learning”, “one minute paper”, “cartoon concept”, “role playing”, “problem-based learning”, “multiple choice test”) and methodological innovation in the laboratory through practical activities.

Teaching Evolutionary Biology: problems, mistakes, common places, some solutions.
Abbiategrasso, Milano
6-8 December 2009
About 15 teachers, mainly from High Scools from various Italian cities,  have joined the course, held at the Convento dell’Annunziata ad Abbiategrasso (Milano). The Course has been organized by ISEB members, with the collaboration of ANISN.
Lectures, each of about one hour, were held by: Marco Ferraguti (The speed of the Evolutionary process), Maurizio Casiraghi (Species at the supermarket: does a barcode of life exist?), Renato Fani (The tree of life: the phylogenesis of prokariotes), David Caramelli (The Evolution of man: new data and hypotheses), Mauro Mandrioli (Adaptation and phenotipic plasticity), Giorgio Bertorelle (The role of chance in Evolution) e Lino Ometto (Things that Evolution fails to explain).
Two more presentations were performed by the Museo Tridentino di Scienze Naturali: one of Prof. Marina Galetto (The didactic section of the Museo Tridentino di Scienze Naturali: goals and activities) and the other by Prof. Matteo Cattadori (The didactic section of the Museo Tridentino di Scienze Naturali: relationships with teachers and in the web). In conclusion, a beautiful show on sexual selection was presented by Rosangela (performing prof. Simia) and Giovanna, performing a student, two collaborators of the teaching session of the Museum.
The course was the occassion of breaking barriers between teachers of any level, in particular from Universities and High Schools. Teachers have interacted very actively, with questions during lectures, and after them discussing on the ability of transferring knowledge to classes.
During discussions, active participation has been favored by Chiara Ceci, an expert in science communication, which provided interesting clues. Of course there were informal moments too.
Therefore, two fields, which are rarely in contact, have been joined: research and high scool teaching, and many projects of collaboration were set up and cohordinated by Prof. Alessandra Magistrelli, because of her role as memer of ISEB and ANISN boards.

The logic of discovery in Evolution: experimental strategies, statistical methods and inferences.
Cogne, Aosta.
15-18 May 2008
ISEB, the Italian Society for Evolutionary Biology, in collaboration with the Gran Paradiso National Park, organized the school on Evolution for Master's and PhD students titeld: ‘The logic of discovery in Evolution: experimental strategies, statistical methods and inferences’.
The school, held by the 'Servizio Scientifico e Sanitario del PNGP' (Cogne, Aosta) from 15 to 18 May 2008, was mainly addressed to students interested in Evolution at the beginning of their research career (Master's and first or second year of PhD), and hosted 15 participants. An active interaction between students and teachers was facilitated by the limited number of participants. The course lasted 3 days (May 15-17), followed by a final field excursion (18 Maggio).
The school was held by international teachers in English:
  • John Endler (University of Exeter): Ecology and evolution of animal behaviour.
  • Lynda Delph (Indiana University): Evolutionary Ecology and reproduction in plants.
  • Curt Lively (Indiana State University): Evolution e coevoluion: sex and genetic diversity in host-parasite systems.
  • Paolo Sordino (Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn di Napoli): EvoDevo.

ISEB School 2008

Genome Evolution: mechanisms, dynamics and case studies.
Viote del Monte Bondone, Trento.
19 - 22 June 2007.
Partecipanti alla scuola Sibe 2007 The first Summer School for PhD students was organized by the Italian Society for Evolutionary Biology in collaboration with the Centro di Ecologia Alpina of 'Viote del Monte Bondone' (Trento).
In the beautiful cool forests and pastures of Trentino, the participants discussed about: Genome Evolution: mechanisms, dynamics and case studies.
During the four days of the school (19-22 June 2007) 14 students and 6 researchers from all over Italy discussed several aspects of genome evolution. Lectures focused both on theoretical aspects and examples from the research topics of the scientists, from:

  • Natural selection and genome evolution  (J. Parsch, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München).
  • Genome evolution in plants (M. Morgante, University of Udine).
  • Chromosome evolution (M. Rocchi, University of Bari).
  • Molecular markers in genomic studies (L. Bargelloni, University of Padoa).
  • The evolution of Mitochondrial genome in metazoans (C. Gissi, University of Milan).
  • Progresses of genomic research (G. Valle, University of Padoa).

ISEB School 2007