Virginie Courtier has been appointed to the Annual Chair of Biodiversity and Ecosystems at the Collège de France. This appointment is a recognition of the high quality of her work.
She will give her inaugural lecture “Penser le vivant autrement” on 9 February 2023 at 6 pm.
Director of research at the CNRS, Virginie Courtier and her team at the Institut Jacques Monod are interested in the mechanisms involved in the evolution of species, in order to better understand our origins and the future of living species. In particular, she studies the evolution of bioadhesives produced by Drosophila flies to stick to various substrates, such as leaves, stems or stones, during metamorphosis. Together with Arnaud Martin, she has created a database www.gephebase.org of genes and mutations that have been identified so far by the scientific community and that are responsible for natural morphological, physiological or behavioural differences in plants and animals. His course will focus on the surprising aspects of the living world and the biases of human beings towards biodiversity
Chair Biodiversity and Ecosystems 2022-2023
The living world is fascinating. Its complexity exceeds that of the most sophisticated machines invented by humans and that of physical material objects. Faced with the great challenges of the 21st century, it is necessary to try to understand this living world and this biodiversity as well as possible, so that the planet Earth continues to be habitable by humans. This course will analyse several features of the living world that are not intuitive and yet are essential to its understanding: its embeddedness in a historical process, its interconnections at many scales and its surprising trajectories through evolution. The course will also examine how DNA sequences and domestication have altered our perception of the living world, and will conclude with current conceptions of nature.