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Scott Carroll (biologist)

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Scott Carroll
Scott P. Carroll, evolutionary ecologist, at the Department of Entomology and Nematology, University of California, Davis
CitizenshipUnited States
Alma materUniversity of Utah, University of Oklahoma, University of Minnesota
Scientific career
InstitutionsUniversity of California, Davis

Scott P. Carroll is an American evolutionary biologist and ecologist affiliated with the University of California, Davis[1] and the University of Queensland. Carroll's main interests are in exploring contemporary evolution to better understand adaptive processes and how those processes can be harnessed to develop solutions to evolutionary challenges in food production, medical care and environmental conservation.[2] With Charles W. Fox, Carroll edited Conservation Biology: Evolution in Action, a book published by Oxford University Press in 2008 in which contributors, across the field of evolutionary biology and conservation, apply evolutionary thinking to concepts and practices in conservation biology, an area of research sometimes called evolutionary ecology.[3] Carroll is founding director of the Institute for Contemporary Evolution.[4]

Life and career[edit]

Scott P. Carroll was awarded his Ph.D. in biology at the University of Utah in 1990. He gained his Master of Science in 1983 at the University of Oklahoma, graduating in 1981 with a Bachelor of Science in ecology and behavioral biology (magna cum laude) at the University of Minnesota.

After gaining his Ph. D. Carrol worked as an academic in Costa Rica, first working at the University of California in 1991.

In 2003–04 and again in 2007–08 he was a Fulbright Scholar at University of Queensland.

Professional practice[edit]

As a principal of Carroll-Loye Biological Research Consulting, Carroll undertakes insect repellent development, testing and registration, providing US EPA compliant efficacy evaluations of both conventional and biological insect repellents.[5] Amanda Mascarelli of the LA Times has written several articles on insect repellents with the help of Carroll-Loye.[6][7][8] In July 2014 Carroll appeared on Good Morning America assisting reporter Becky Worley with a mosquito box in a story comparing DEET based sprays with Picaridin.[9]

Awards and honours[edit]


In conservation biology Carroll cautions against overzealous "native species bias", which he believes may sometimes result in environmentally unwise, expensive and ultimately unsuccessful non-native-species eradication attempts, appearing as one of 19 authors (led by Mark Davis) of "Don't judge species on their origins" in Nature, Issue 7350.[10] This area of conservation biology is hotly debated, the Mark Davis et al. article sparking a response from Daniel Simberloff and another 140 scientists, also in Nature entitled "Non-natives: 141 scientists object."[11] Carroll and co-author Matthew Chew then responded to Simberloff et al. in an opinion piece in The Scientist.[12]

In a special issue of Evolutionary Applications[13] in March 2011, Carroll proposes a conciliatory approach to manage the eco-evolutionary dynamics resulting from interactions of natives with non-natives.[14] Carroll expanded on his views on conciliation biology in an address to the Commonwealth Club of California, "An approach to conservation that reconciles past, present and future landscapes in nature", part of the Commonwealth Club's program “The science of conservation and biodiversity in the 21st century.”[15] Sharon Levy quotes Carroll in OnEarth magazine as saying: "Conciliation biology offers a valuable insight, not that we must give up the fight against invasive species but that we can enlist strong allies in the wild."[16] Ann Hild, a shrub-land ecologist at the University of Wyoming, says: "The heart of Carroll's argument will be hard for many to accept, because it means we're no longer striving for a pristine community of native plants." Levy agrees Carroll's is "the most practical approach in some cases, but preventing new invasions still seems most vital.[16]



  • 2011 Carroll, SP, Kinnison, M, and Bernatchez, L eds. In the Light of Evolution: Interdisciplinary Challenges in Food, Health and the Environment. Evolutionary Applications 4:155–413.
  • 2009 Carroll, SP, ed. Causes and consequences of adaptive evolution. Functional Ecology.
  • 2008 Carroll, SP and Fox, CW, eds. Conservation Biology–Evolution in Action. 380 pp. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • 2007 Hendry, ., Carroll, SP, and Reznick, D, eds. Evolution on Ecological Time-Scales (special feature with nine articles). Functional Ecology 21:387–477.


Included in:

  • Barton, NH, Briggs, DEG, Eisen, JA, Goldstein, DB and Patel, NH, 2007. Evolution. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press, Cold Spring Harbor.
  • Boyd, R and Silk, JB, 2008. How humans evolved. WW Norton & Company, New York.
  • Frankham, R, Ballou, JD, and Briscoe, DA, 2009. Introduction to conservation genetics, p. 420. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
  • Freeman, S and Herron, JC, 2007. Evolutionary analysis (4th edition). Benjamin Cummings, New York.
  • Freeman, S, 2005. Biological science. Pearson Prentice Hall, New York.
  • Futuyma, DJ, 2009. Evolution, pp. 349–350. Sinauer Assoc. Inc., Sunderland, MA.
  • Garland, T and Rose, MR, 2009. Experimental Evolution, pp. 181–182. University of California Press, Los Angeles.
  • Molles, MC, 2009. Ecology, concepts and applications, pp. 91–98. McGraw-Hill, New York.
  • Moore, J and Moore, R, 2006. Evolution 101. Greenwood Publishing Group, Westport, CT.
  • Roff, D, 2002. Life history evolution. Sinauer Assoc., Inc., Sunderland, MA.
  • Simmons, LW, 2001. Sperm competition and its evolutionary consequences in the insects. Princeton University Press.
  • Zimmer, C and Emlen, DJ, 2012. Evolution: Making Sense of Life. Roberts.

Popular books[edit]

Mentioned in:

  • Coyne, JA 2010. Why evolution is true. Penguin, New York.
  • Weiner, J 1995. The beak of the finch, a story of evolution in our time.

Journal articles[edit]

In order of most citations as of 3 September 2014


  1. ^ "UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology". 2 September 2014. Retrieved 2 September 2014.
  2. ^ "Institute for Contemporary Evolution". 2 September 2014. Retrieved 2 September 2014.
  3. ^ Oxford University Press, catalogue page for Conservation Biology: Evolution in Action. Oxford University Press. 2 September 2014. ISBN 9780195306781. Retrieved 2 September 2014.
  4. ^ "Institute for Contemporary Evolution". Institute for Contemporary Evolution. Retrieved 12 September 2014.
  5. ^ "Carroll-Loye Biological Research Consulting". Retrieved 3 September 2014.
  6. ^ "How to choose an insect repellent". Los Angeles Times. 1 June 2011. Retrieved 3 September 2014.
  7. ^ Mascarelli, Amanda (1 June 2012). "DEET repels bugs, worries consumers". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 3 September 2014.
  8. ^ Mascarelli, Amanda (June 2011). "'Natural' insect repellents are plentiful but not always reliable". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 3 September 2014.
  9. ^ "New Bug Spray Eliminates Risky Chemicals". ABC News.
  10. ^ Davis, Mark A.; Chew, Matthew K.; Hobbs, Richard J.; Lugo, Ariel E.; Ewel, John J.; Vermeij, Geerat J.; Brown, James H.; Rosenzweig, Michael L.; Gardener, Mark R.; Carroll, Scott P.; Thompson, Ken; Pickett, Steward T. A.; Stromberg, Juliet C.; Tredici, Peter Del; Suding, Katharine N.; Ehrenfeld, Joan G.; Philip Grime, J.; Mascaro, Joseph; Briggs, John C. (3 September 2014). "Nature, International weekly journal of science, archive". Nature. 474 (7350): 153–154. doi:10.1038/474153a. PMID 21654782. S2CID 205065030.
  11. ^ Simberloff, Daniel (6 July 2011). "Nature 475, 36 (07 July 2011)". Nature. 475 (7354): 36. doi:10.1038/475036a. hdl:10536/DRO/DU:30077018. PMID 21734689.
  12. ^ "Opinion: The Invasive Ideology, Biologists and conservationists are too eager to demonize non-native species, by Matthew K. Chew and Scott P. Carroll". The Scientist. 7 September 2011.
  13. ^ "Evolutionary Applications". Evolutionary Applications. doi:10.1111/(ISSN)1752-4571.
  14. ^ Carroll, SP (2011). "Conciliation biology: the eco-evolutionary management of permanently invaded biotic systems". Evolutionary Applications. 4 (2): 184–99. doi:10.1111/j.1752-4571.2010.00180.x. PMC 3352563. PMID 25567967.
  15. ^ "Scott Carroll: Conciliation Biology". Retrieved 3 September 2014.
  16. ^ a b "Living With Aliens". Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). Retrieved 3 September 2014.

External links[edit]