Research Interest Plant Ecology and Evolution, Tropical Biology, Community Ecology, Biogeography, Plant Function, Phylogenetics, Biodiversity Informatics. The primary research focus of the Swenson laboratory is to discover the mechanisms underlying the origins of plant biodiversity and its distribution through space and time. We believe that a general long-term goal for those studying biodiversity should be to link the evolutionary processes underlying diversification to ecological patterns and interactions across scales. In our pursuit of these goals, the laboratory takes an integrative and comparative approach employing a diverse array of techniques, tools and insights from multiple disciplines. Our field research is conducted in forests around the world including the USA, Puerto Rico, Costa Rica, China, Taiwan, Malaysia, Thailand and New Zealand.