TED Fellow Lauren Sallan applies big data analytics to the fossil record to reveal how mass extinctions, environmental change and ecological interactions impact how evolution operates on immense scales.

Why you should listen

Lauren Sallan is currently compiling and analyzing the vast fossil record of fishes. She's using this "deeptime database" to investigate ecological interactions, biodiversity and the interactions of habitats and evolutionary pathways. She's is working to uncover patterns in mass extinction events and examining the ways that environmental conditions affect ecosystem structures.

Sallan became a TED Fellow in 2017. Her research has been published in Science, PNAS and Current Biology. It has also been featured in the New York Times, The Chicago Tribune, Forbes, the New Scientist, the Discovery Channel as well as The Ends of the World by Peter Brannen.

Lauren Sallan’s TED talk

More news and ideas from Lauren Sallan

Live from TEDSummit 2019

10 years of TED Fellows: Notes from the Fellows Session of TEDSummit 2019

July 22, 2019

The event: TEDSummit 2019, Fellows Session, hosted by Shoham Arad and Lily Whitsitt When and where: Monday, July 22, 2019, 9am BST, at the Edinburgh Convention Centre in Edinburgh, Scotland Speakers: Carl Joshua Ncube, Suzanne Lee, Sonaar Luthra, Jon Lowenstein, Alicia Eggert, Lauren Sallan, Laura Boykin Opening: A quick, witty performance from Carl Joshua Ncube, […]

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Live from TED2017

Gallery: Who won the evolutionary race in our oceans?

April 25, 2017

TED Fellow Lauren Sallan is a paleobiologist who analyzes “big data” — the fossil record — to study large-scale evolution. As she says: “I want to know why some fishes win and others lose.” Here’s the story of her talk, in amazing work from illustrator and animator Dennis Moore.    

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