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Hoekstra Inducted to National Academy of Sciences

Hoekstra Inducted to National Academy of Sciences

MCB professor Hopi Hoekstra was recently inducted into the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), after being officially elected to the organization last year. The NAS is one of the oldest scientific organizations in the United States; established during the administration of President Abraham Lincoln to offer advice on matters related to science and technology.

“One of the primary roles of the NAS is to provide objective, science-based advice on critical issues affecting the nation,” said Hoekstra. “I look forward to learning more about the work of the NAS and ultimately becoming involved in some of these advisory roles.”

84 new members are elected to NAS each year, beginning with nominations from current members. Nominations include a brief statement on the prospective member’s accomplishments, a CV, and a list of no more than 12 published works. This is followed by several rounds of voting by current members before the final list of new members is revealed.

“Hopi’s induction into the National Academy of Sciences is but the latest recognition of her meteoric and influential career,” said Hoekstra’s colleague Scott Edwards of the Organismic and Evolutionary Biology department. “Her work is a wonderful blend of natural history, functional genomics, behavior and neurobiology.  It points the way to where the field of evolutionary biology is going – trying to link genes to variation in phenotypic traits that influence fitness. And all this in species that are of interest not only to geneticists, but also to zoologists and the general public.  Harvard is lucky to have her and we look forward to many additional years of this exciting research!”

“Our recent work has focused on understanding the genetic basis of behavioral evolution,” Hoekstra said. “We are trying to understand the role of genes and their action in neural circuits in affecting behaviors that matter to organisms in their natural habitats.”

“My MCB colleagues and I congratulate Hopi and are looking forward to many great discoveries from her lab,” said MCB chair Alex Schier.

Hopi Hoekstra’s faculty profile