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NDSU ecologist receives international award


NDSU’s Ned Dochtermann was selected for an international award recognizing outstanding contributions to the body of knowledge in his field, especially for his influential role in the field’s move toward using new statistical approaches for analyzing animal behavior.

Dochtermann, an evolutionary ecologist and assistant professor of biological sciences, received the 2016 Animal Behavior Society’s Outstanding New Investigator Award. It is an international award for early-career scientists who are leaders in the field.

Dochtermann researches how behavioral patterns in animals affect evolution. For example, aggressive behavior that results in more access to resources could indirectly affect the evolution of other behaviors, such as mate choice.

He also has developed statistical methods for analyzing animal behavior and is among the first animal behavior researchers to use new, more powerful statistical models that more accurately characterize how traits are correlated.

Dochtermann said collaboration with other scientists, undergraduate researchers and graduate students has contributed to his success. “I’ve been fortunate to work with a lot of great people,” he said.

Dochtermann joined NDSU in 2012. He earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of California, Davis, and his doctorate in ecology, evolution and conservation biology from the University of Nevada, Reno.

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