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  • Cited by 97
Cambridge University Press
Online publication date:
June 2012
Print publication year:
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Book description

Mathematical modelling is widely used in ecology and evolutionary biology and it is a topic that many biologists find difficult to grasp. In this new textbook Marc Mangel provides a no-nonsense introduction to the skills needed to understand the principles of theoretical and mathematical biology. Fundamental theories and applications are introduced using numerous examples from current biological research, complete with illustrations to highlight key points. Exercises are also included throughout the text to show how theory can be applied and to test knowledge gained so far. Suitable for advanced undergraduate courses in theoretical and mathematical biology, this book forms an essential resource for anyone wanting to gain an understanding of theoretical ecology and evolution.


‘…this is a hugely engaging and interesting book. It's written with many asides and snippets of information about the topic, and particularly about the key figures in the history of theoretical biology … I do recommend this book as an excellent read and insight into the methodology of the theoretical biologist at work …’

Source: Biologist

'[the author] goes to considerable lengths to generate the necessary thirst through metaphor, humour, and through the clarity with which he writes about the subject. At the same time he is realistic about the need ultimately to get out a pencil and paper, and to work through the exercises, as the key to making real progress in understanding. … The blend of deterministic and stochastic modelling nicely captures the pulse of current thinking in theoretical ecology, and is a real strength of this book … For me, part of the charm of the book is its quirkiness, and I will be recommending it to my graduate students.'

Source: Fish and Fisheries

'… offers a refreshing approach … providing aspiring (and even established) theoreticians with a user-friendly and thorough introduction to a wide variety of techniques. … It is an accessible introduction to different models and analyses in theoretical population biology. … it is replete with exercises. These are not confined to the end of each chapter but appear after the introduction of associated material. This approach is a huge asset that underscores the book's pedagogic approach to mathematical biology, allowing easy reference to particular topics.'

Source: BioScience

'… very entertaining … a real desire to encourage enthusiastic participation, and a general sense of excitement about the use of theory in biology, helped along by the many references to classic studies in ecology and evolutionary biology.'

Source: Evolution

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