Professor Alasdair Iain Houston FRS


Professor of Theoretical Biology, School of Biological Sciences, University of Bristol

Houston, together with McNamara, pioneered, developed and formalized the dynamic optimization approach to behavioural ecology, and has applied it widely, generating fundamental insights. Currently the gold standard for modelling state/time dependency in animal behaviour from the perspective of the selective forces that act in nature, their approach uses stochastic dynamic programming to find the strategies that maximise inclusive fitness. Their work is now an obligate reference in domains as far apart as temporal organization of daily routines, sexual selection, migration, risk sensitivity, dynamic games, and fat levels. Behavioural ecology would not have its present form without their outstanding contribution.

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