I have a main interest in theoretical ecology, specifically in the interspecific interactions on different trophic levels and their effect on community assembly. Lately this interest has been more focused in an agricultural context on pest-natural enemies systems. I did both my BSc and MSc at Paris-Saclay university. My BSc was focused on organisms’ biology and ecology while my MSc was focused on evolutionary and functional ecology, more particularly in theory and modelling. My master’s thesis consisted in creating a model to assess the efficacy of a biological control agent which lead to my focused interest in this particular system.
About my research
My PhD is entitled “Effects of eco-evolutionary dynamics on ecosystem services in heterogeneous agricultural landscapes – novel avenues for predicting biological pest control”
Pest damage on crops has always been a major issue in agriculture. This has lead to practices such as pesticides to be developed. Nevertheless pesticides have negative effects in both ecosystems and human health. Because of this, other practices have been developed such as biological control, which consist in the use of pest’s natural enemies (e.g. predators, parasitoids) in order to control their populations. The advantage of this method is that it mostly relies on biological interactions between the organisms. Different theoretical and empirical frameworks have been used to better understand these pest - natural enemies systems, particularly focused in the meta-community framework. Nonetheless, even though this framework is useful to better understand this system’s community assembly it originally does not include evolution. As organism’s traits evolve they adapt to different pressures (biotic or abiotic), meaning that their response to their environment will not remain constant through time.
The aim of my PhD is to assess, through modelling, the effects that these eco-evolutionary dynamics (i.e. demographic and evolutionary dynamics) have on biological pest control. This will allow us to have a better understanding of biological control processes’ and with this, be able to come up with frameworks that will render biological control more efficient in practice.