Otso Ovaskainen


    Research areas

  • 1181 Ecology, evolutionary biology - ecology, population divergence, evolutionary biology, mathematical biology, spatial ecology, population genetics, quantitative genetics, adaptation, dispersal, movement, Bayesian inference, metapopulation
  • 111 Mathematics

Curriculum Vitae

My professorship is in mathematical  ecology. I completed my PhD in mathematics at the Helsinki University of Technology in 1998, after which I joined the Metapopulation Research Centre (MRC) as a post doc for Ilkka Hanski. After spending the year 2001-2002 in Bryan Grenfell's group in Cambridge, UK, I rejoined the MRC, within which I established the Mathematical Biology Group. I am currently the director of MRC.


My research covers mathematical theory, statistical methods, and empirical research, the emphasis being in linking theory to observational and experimental data. My long-term interests are in (i) the development of metapopulation theory and dispersal theory. Here the aim is to understand the movements, dynamics and persistence of individuals and populations inhabiting fragmented landscapes; (ii) building links between microscopic (e.g. individual-based) and macroscopic (e.g. population-based) models in a stochastic and spatial setting; (iii) the development of joint species distribution models to analyze the assembly and dynamics of species communities; (iv) Bayesian approaches in evolutionary quantitative genetics.

Latest publications

  1. A comprehensive evaluation of predictive performance of 33 species distribution models at species and community levels

    Norberg, A., Abrego Antia, N., Blanchet, F. G., Adler, F. R., Anderson, B. J., Anttila, J., Araújo, M. B., Dallas, T. A., Dunson, D., Elith, J., Foster, S., Fox, R., Franklin, J., Godsoe, W., Guisan, A., O'Hara, B., Hill, N. A., Holt, R. D., Hui, F. K. C., Husby, M. & 15 othersKålås, J. A., Lehikoinen, A., Luoto, M., Mod, H. K., Newell, G., Renner, I., Roslin, T. V., Soininen, J., Thuiller, W., Vanhatalo, J. P., Warton, D., White, M., Zimmermann, N. E., Gravel, D. & Ovaskainen, O. T., 2 May 2019, In : Ecological Monographs.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


    Kurhinen, J., Ovaskainen, O., Ivanter, E., Levykh, A., Khlijap, L., Kuznetsova, I. & Saburova, L., Apr 2019, International Scientific Symposium:Ecology and evolution: New challenges. Ekaterinburg, Russia, April 1–5, 2019.p. 65-68.. p. 65-68 4 p.

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review

  3. Joint species movement modeling: how do traits influence movements?

    Ovaskainen, O., Ramos, D. L., Slade, E. M., Merckx, T., Tikhonov, G., Pennanen, J., Pizo, M. A., Ribeiro, M. C. & Manuel Morales, J., Apr 2019, In : Ecology. 100, 4, 8 p., 02622.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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Latest activities

  1. Ecology Letters (Journal)

    Otso Ovaskainen (Editor)
    1 Jan 2015 → …

    Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditor of research journal

  2. Talk in the Finnish National Ecology meeting

    Otso Ovaskainen (Speaker: Presenter)
    13 Dec 201214 Dec 2012

    Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesOrganisation and participation in conferences, workshops, courses, seminars

  3. Elisabet Ottosson

    Otso Ovaskainen (Host)
    12 Dec 201216 Dec 2012

    Activity: Hosting a visitor typesAcademic visit at UH

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Latest prizes

  1. The Academy of Finland Award

    Otso Ovaskainen (Recipient), 2009

    Prize: Prizes and awards

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