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PhD student, FRIA Research Fellow

phone: +32 (0)2 650 45 11

e-mail: tfelicien@yahoo.fr

Research interests

PhD research project

Genetic and physiological studies of genus Guibourtia in a context of climate change

Supervisor: Jean-Louis Doucet

Co-supervisor: Olivier Hardy

Based on a biological model with several sisters species, this work aims to contribute to the comprehension of the mechanisms that are the source of the diversity of tropical rainforest ecosystems. The model selected is the genus of Guibourtia (Fabaceae / Caesalpinioideae), which includes 13 tree species of high economic and social importance. Addressing speciation issues, our study seeks to (i) test the hypothesis that populations of closely related species should be studied in terms of both functional traits and phylogeny, (ii) infer the evolutionary history within the genus Guibourtia thanks to recent phylogeographic analysis tools and molecular dating, and (iii) explore the possibilities of contemporary gene flow between parapatric or sympatric species of this genus. It will be used, in this study, climate models geological eras past to infer the distribution of the species during the Quaternary, and to establish the link with phylogeographic and phylogenetic analyses. Such modelling to scale of their distribution area could be used to evaluate the sensitivity of species of the genus Guibourtia and eventual impacts of climate change on base of the climate change models in the future. Through this project, it would be possible to determine sustainable management strategies for the different evolutionary units of the genus Guibourtia.

Educational background

  1. PhD in Ecological and Evolutionary Biology (2014 - today)

  2. Advanced Master in Environmental Sciences and Management (2013, Université de Liège, Belgique)

  3. MSc. degree in Forestry « Natural Resources Management » (2009, Université d’Abomey-Calavi, Bénin)

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