• About > Staff > Jean-Philippe Lessard – QCBS Postdoctoral Fellow

Jean-Philippe Lessard – QCBS Postdoctoral Fellow

Jean-Philippe Lessard



I began my scientific training at McGill University, where I obtained my BSc working on the ecology of insects with Chris Buddle. I then received my PhD in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of Tennessee in 2010, where I worked on the community ecology of ants with Nate Sanders. I then went on to work as a postdoctoral fellow with Carsten Rahbek at the Center for Macroecology, Evolution and Climate, based at the University of Copenhagen. I am now a postdoctoral fellow at the Quebec Center for Biodiversity Science, based at McGill University, where my work focuses on assembly dynamics of tree communities. I conduct much of my current work in collaboration with Mark Vellend and Jonathan Davies.


My research aims to improve our understanding of how ecological and evolutionary forces interact to generate and maintain biological diversity. To achieve this, I integrate observational and experimental field studies with null model and comparative phylogenetic analyses. Three themes unite my research program: (1) biotic interactions and coexistence, (2) the geography of ecological processes and (3) historical and evolutionary determinants of animal and plant community structure. My work at the Quebec Center for Biodiversity Science will employ a functional and phylogenetic approach to elucidate the processes underlying community assembly and potentially promoting the maintenance of biodiversity in tree communities at the Centre de la Nature du Mont Saint-Hilaire.