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The Evolution of a Biologist in an Interdisciplinary Environment

Gadagkar, R (2006) The Evolution of a Biologist in an Interdisciplinary Environment. [Book Chapter]

Gadagkar 2006-In Grimm and Meyer-Kalkus.pdf - Published Version

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1515/9783050083773


I had long known and admired Rüdiger Wehner as one who has made some of the most fundamental and fascinating discoveries about the navigational abilities of honeybees and ants. There was always, however, a somewhat mysterious side to Rüdiger – he was somehow associated with a certain Institute for Advanced Study in Berlin, which, he often told me, brought together scholars of all disciplines from biology to music! He often suggested that I spend a year at this institute. What would I do among social scientists, humanists, artists and musicians? More importantly, how could I leave my laboratory, my students and my wasps for a whole year? I usually smiled politely and did not take the invitation seriously. But Rüdiger patiently persisted, as he does so successfully with his experiments on desert ants in Africa. Finally I gathered the courage to spend five months at the Wissenschaftskolleg – after I was promised a break of several months in the middle of the five-month period, when I could go back to Bangalore and reunite with my wasps and my students. Thus began my evolution into a very different kind of biologist, and I have now spent over 20 months during the past five years at the Kolleg. My experience has been remarkable, unforgettable and irreversible. I will here recall my association with this unique institution and attempt to describe its influence on my professional life.

Item Type: Book Chapter
Publisher: Academie Verlag
Keywords: Evolution of a biologist, Interdisciplianry environment
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Centre for Ecological Sciences
Date Deposited: 22 Mar 2021 09:37
Last Modified: 22 Mar 2021 09:37
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/68271

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