Emily Austen

Assistant Professor


I am an evolutionary ecologist fascinated by the lives of plants.  Unlike most terrestrial animals, most flowering plants are hermaphroditic, immobile, and modular (that is, they grow through the production of repeated structures).  My lab examines how these core characters shape the strategies plants use to find mates, fend off enemies, and cope with changing conditions. Our work takes place in the field, greenhouse, and lab.

You can read more about our work on the lab website: emilyjausten.wordpress.com


Some examples of the types of work we do:

Austen, E.J., S.-Y. Lin, and J.R.K. Forrest. 2018. On the ecological significance of pollen color: a case study in American trout lily (Erythronium americanum). Ecology doi: 10.1002/ecy.2164

Austen, E.J., and A.E. Weis. 2016. Estimating selection through male fitness: three independent methods illuminate the nature and causes of selection on flowering time. Proceedings of the Royal Society B doi: 10.1098/rspb.2015.2635.

Austen, E.J., and A.E. Weis. 2015. What drives selection on flowering time? An experimental manipulation of the inherent correlation between genotype and environment. Evolution 69: 2018–2033.

Austen, E.J., J.R.K. Forrest, and A.E. Weis. 2015. Within-plant variation in reproductive investment: consequences for selection on flowering time. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 28: 56–79.


Postdoctoral Research: NSERC Postdoctoral Fellow, Biology Department, University of Ottawa, Ottawa ON

PhD: Departmetn of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, University of Toronto, Toronto ON

Master of Environmental Studies: School for Resource & Environmental Studies, Dalhousie University, Halifax NS

BSc Biology Honours: Queen’s University, Kingston ON


Biology 2301 - Form and Function: Plants, Fall

Biology 3501 - Native Flora (Vascular Plants), Fall

Biology 2811 - Genetics & Evolution, Winter

Biology 3801 - Theoretical & Evolutionary Ecology, Winter


Please see the lab website (emilyjausten.wordpress.com) for information on current research