Our lab includes biologists engaged in fieldwork, genomics, neuroscience, computational and behavioral studies. These varied approaches provide unique perspectives on social behavior, its diversity and its mechanisms.
Click on photos to learn more about individual lab members.
Steve Phelps, @evolbrain
Dr. Phelps got his PhD in Integrative Biology from the University of Texas in 1999. As a student he received fellowships from the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) and the National Institutes of Health. He was a post-doctoral fellow at STRI and at the NSF Center for Behavioral Neuroscience in Atlanta. In 2002 he became a faculty member at the University of Florida, and joined the University of Texas in 2010. He is currently a Professor of Integrative Biology, the Director of UT-Austin's Center for Brain, Behavior and Evolution, and President-elect of the Society for Social Neuroscience. At the University of Texas at Austin, he is a member of graduate programs in Ecology, Evolution and Behavior, Cell and Molecular Biology, Neuroscience and Psychology. His lab has been funded by NSF, NIH and National Geographic. (A CV is available here.)
His research explores why individuals and species vary in their social behavior. The lab works at the intersection of social neuroscience, gene regulation, and evolutionary genetics. His teaching includes courses in Human Biology, Behavioral Epigenetics, and Epigenetics and Society. Dr. Phelps uses his expertise in genetics, neurobiology and behavior to write and speak about the intersection of science and society. His writing for the public has appeared in Aeon, The Atlantic, and The New York Times. His essay in Aeon was listed as a notable literary essay in Best American Essays 2018. A video of a public talk on the biology of bonding is here.