Angiosperm Tree of Life - Assembling the Tree of Life

Part of the National Science Foundation's Assembling the Tree of Life Program


The AToL Grant has enabled many activities, including public educational programs, workshops and symposiums, and the training of many postdoctorates, graduate, and undergraduate students, especially underrepresented groups, as well as visiting scientists. Training has focused on interdisciplinary training, combining phylogenetic, genomic, and evolutionary biology.

AToL experience gained by PIs is used in their academic courses and to update the widely used book, Plant Systematics: A Phylogenetic Approach

The following compilation of outreach activities is currently under construction.

Public Education
2008 Exhibit "Travels in the Great Tree of Life" opened to the public in the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, which was partially funded by the NSF Angiosperm funding. It will remain on exhibit until February 2009 and then will be available for travel.

Public Education
2007, April. First Flower, part of the PBS series NOVA about the first flowering plant.

Workshops and Symposiums
2006 Bodega Bay workshop in applied phylogenetics, Mike Sanderson was an instructor. This one-week workshop through UC-Davis taught methods for phylogenetic and comparative analysis to approximately 30 graduate students from around the world.

2006 First Annual Gator-Seminole Chomp n' Chop Phylogenetics Symposium at Cedar Key, Fl. This AToL project provided partial support for this symposium that brought together 75 researchers and students for a day of presentations and informal interactions.

Public Education
2006 "Museum Nights Movie Night" at the Florida Museum of Natural History. This outreach program brings a science fiction movie to the public from the perspective of scientists. "The Relic" was shown, with opening commentary on molecular systematics and concluding discussion by Pam Soltis.

Visitng Scholars
Dr. Shuguang Jian and Dr. Heng-Chang Wang were trained at the University of Florida to learn many new laboratory methods as well as learned skills in phylogenetic analysis

Workshops and Symposiums
2005 Yale University - Darcie McMahon from University of Florida met to discuss approaches for incorporating the Tree of Life metaphor into natural history exhibits.

2005 Fairchild Tropical Gardens - Doug Soltis from University of Florida visited with faculty and students from Fairchild and Florida International to discuss angiosperm origins, evolution and diversification. Job opportunities and training in systematics were discussed.