Social insects like honeybees and army ants are cool, there is no denying it. But how, and why, do they exist at all? Sociality represents a major transition in evolution: understanding the origins, mechanisms and function of social behaviour provides important insights into one of the most fascinating phenomena in the natural world.
Why do animals live together in societies? How did this evolve, and what are the mechanisms by which sociality and social behaviour arise? These are the questions we go to work thinking about. We are addressing these questions by taking a holistic view of social behaviour, from the differences in gene expression to the observable phenotypes we see in the field. Our favourite study organisms are wasps, bees, ants and termites.
Read more about our main research themes and approaches: