J. P. BOLLBACK
I was born in north-western Pennsylvania in 1971. In the autumn of 1990, after free-lancing as a photographer, I enrolled in the B.Sc Environmental Sciences program at the State University of New York (College at Purchase) with a focus in Environmental Organic Chemistry. At the start of my third year I took a course in vertebrate evolution. During the course I realized that I wanted to study evolutionary biology. In the autumn of 1993 I transferred to the University of Maryland to pursue my studies in evolutionary biology. I earned my B.Sc degree in 1995.
After completing my undergraduate studies I continued with post-graduate studies at Maryland in the Department of Zoology and at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History Laboratory of Molecular Systematics. Between 1995-1998 I was a Pre-doctoral Fellow at the Smithsonian.
In the fall of 1998, I began my Ph.D. work on experimental evolution and statistical phylogenetics with John Huelsenbeck at the University of Rochester, New York. I earned my Master of Science degree in 2000 in Evolutionary Genetics and then my
Ph.D. in October of 2004. After completing my Ph.D. I moved to the University of Copenhagen, Denmark to work with Rasmus Nielsen on a number of problems in statistical genetics. I worked in Denmark from the autumn of 2004 until the spring of 2008. I then moved from Copenhagen to the University of Edinburgh, Scotland to work with Andrew Leigh-Brown and Andrew Rambaut on the evolutionary dynamics of influenza.
From late 2010 to 2016 I accepted a position as an tenure-track Assistant Professor at a new research institute in Austria (IST Austria). I was at the time a young researcher and couldn't pass up up the opportunity of a life-time to be a part of building a new research institute, rather than going for a more traditional track. Soon after I was asked by the Institute President to act as the Deputy (or Vice) Programme Chair of the Graduate School. I served in this status, between 2010 and late 2014 when I stepped down. During this time I was tasked by the President with creating a new and "interdisciplinary curriculum" producing for the time a great programme that taught interdisciplinary research but built a deep knowledge of the individual's research field.
I moved to the University of Liverpool (Institute of Integrative Biology) in 2016 as a Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor). My move was motivated by the vibrant research environment in biology.
My research focuses on understanding evolutionary constraints. To better understand constraints my group focuses on four focal areas: horizontal gene transfer (HGT), gene regulation, costs and benefits of immunity, and the properties of mutations. See my Research pages for more info...
My CV can be downloaded as a PDF here: