Fitting non-Gaussian diffusion models to evolutionary data: towards a generalized framework for phylogenetic comparative analyses. (2014–2016)
I aim to develop cutting-edge statistical methods for evolutionary biology in order to answer big questions using data derived from multiple species. Such methods are needed because of the variety of multi-species data that are becoming available, which cannot be dealt with correctly using current methods. The research is significant because it will provide a new way of fitting a wide class of statistical models to evolutionary data, in a very general setting. Further, this project will unite current methodology in a broader framework so that the proposed new methods are a generalisation of currently accepted theory. The outcomes will include a freely-available software package that implements the methods in a user-friendly form.