Dr. Lipshutz is being considered for a faculty position within the Division of Biological Sciences. This public seminar is part of the interview process.
Our understanding of the proximate and ultimate mechanisms shaping competitive behavior primarily stems from research on male-male competition for mates and resources, even though female-female competition is widespread. In this research talk, I investigate the hormonal and neurogenomic processes that regulate aggression and other competitive traits in female animals, and in turn, explore how variation among species can shape evolutionary processes like speciation. I examine these questions in cavity-nesting birds, for which competition over limited nesting sites has driven aggressive behavior in both females and males, as well as in sex-role reversed birds, for which females compete for mates and males conduct parental care. This work highlights how an evolutionary framework can inform our understanding of the neuroendocrine mechanisms regulating social behavior, and tests whether expectations of sexual selection theory derived in male animals are upheld in females.
Dr. Sara Lipshutz
NSF Postdoctoral Fellow
Department of Biology, Indiana University
Division of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior, Indiana University-Bloomington