Final circular

Download the final circular HERE


The meeting program is now available in the ‘program’ tab of the menu above. Additionally, click here to get the link to subscribe to your favourite calendar app or share through social media. Changes and updates in the schedule will be readily available at the meeting and program websites, so please stay tuned.

Contributions format


Talks will take place in the Sala d’Actes (Lecture Hall) of the Museu Blau.

Each of the plenary speakers will have 60 minutes (45 minutes talk + 15 minutes for discussion), while each regular contribution will have 20 minutes (15 minutes talk + 5 minutes for questions).

However, bear in mind that in accordance with the Society rules: “cutting off a question and answer period can only be done after the moderator has asked for a vote of cloture from the audience.  A 2/3 majority of those present is required for cloture. Hence, a speaker may be called to stop for time, but the question and answer period continues as long as there is debate or until halted by cloture”.

Make your slides in you preferred program but a final file in PDF format is highly recommend to avoid compatibility problems. Load onto the computer in the lecture hall using a USB pen before the session begins. Lecture computer is a PC, so Mac users please check that your presentation is compatible with Windows. Try to avoid using your own computer since switching computers may take some extra time.


Please make posters A0 portrait size. Posters will be exhibited in the Vestíbul (Vestibule), besides the coffee break space and across the main hall, same floor as the Sala d’Actes. Please bring them here on the morning of the first day of the congress (Monday 17th).

Poster boards will be labelled with the presenting authors last name. Mounting material to hang your poster will be provided. Poster presenters are asked to be present at their poster on the day they were assigned in the meeting schedule. Please take posters down during the coffee break of Thursday 21st.


Transmitting Science offers 20 % discount on the fee of any of its 2019 courses using the discount code WH370918.


In 2018 the Willi Hennig Society meeting will be coming for the first time to the Mediterranean!

Barcelona welcomes you all to the XXXVII Annual Meeting of the Willi Hennig Society. The congress will be held on September 16th to 20th 2018 at the landmark building of the Museu Blau, home of the Natural Sciences Museum of Barcelona, within walking distance to the four-kilometre long sandy beaches that merge the city with the ancient sea.

Barcelona is an open city, a harbor where new ideas, modern arts and architectural styles, and technological advances have first entered the Iberian Peninsula. Because of this, Barcelona has historically played a leading role in the development and advancement of politics, science, technology and arts at the western end of Europe.

To honor Barcelona’s long tradition of open-mindedness and eclecticism, we propose a meeting where all perspectives and approaches to modern systematic research can be presented and discussed.  The Willi Hennig Society was formed with the explicit purpose of “advancing the science of phylogenetic systematics in all its aspects of theory, principles, methodology, and practice, for both living and fossil organisms, with emphasis on areas of common interest to all taxonomists regardless of individual specialization”. In alignment with the goals of the WHS will welcome all classic and new, integrative and interdisciplinary theories and methodologies that may help us to better understand the diversity of life, across time and space and at multiple hierarchical levels. We especially would like to encourage the participation of women in a plea for a most needed gender equality.

The Willi Hennig Society meeting in Barcelona will provide an arena for exchanging ideas, sparking collaborations, developing new vocations and training the next generation of systematic biologists.


Zoological Systematics and Evolution Research Group, Universitat de Barcelona logo
Institut de Biologia Evolutiva CISC-UPF
Museu de Ciències Naturals de Barcelona logo



Barcelona has a very good system of public transport, with subways running each 3-4 minutes. You can check the map of train and subway lines here.

You can arrive at the Museum Blau by tram or subway:

  • Subway: Take the line L3 (Yellow line) and get off at El “Maresme / Fòrum” stop.
  • Tram: Take the line T4 and get off at “Fòrum” stop.

If you plan to take the public transport during the whole meeting, the best option is to buy a T10, which has 10 tickets and allows to transfer between different transports.


Hotels within walking distance of the Venue (please check the exact location on the map):

Another option to stay in the city (although not so near the Venue) is ResaInn.

Barcelona is a very touristic city and has a wide offer in hotels, hostels, etc. The only thing you have to take into account are easy connections with L3 subway line or T4 tram line.

Please note that Barcelona is a very popular tourist destination, and September is still peak travel season. We kindly advise you to book your accommodation well in advance. We recommend using online hotel booking services, which frequently provide better deals than the hotels themselves.


Banquet Speech

Gonzalo Giribet
Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA.

Gonzalo Giribet Banquet Speech

Bio: Gonzalo Giribet is the Alexander Agassiz Professor of Zoology in the Museum of Comparative Zoology and Professor of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. He did his undergraduate (1993) and PhD (1997) at the Universitat de Barcelona, moved to the American Museum of Natural History to do a postdoc, and started a tenure-track position at Harvard in 2000. As a professional zoologist, he has been interested in reconstructing the tree of life of a diversity of animal groups using morphological and molecular data, including phylogenomics. He has published numerous papers and book chapters on a diversity of topics related to invertebrate animals and currently serves as Editor-in-Chief for Invertebrate Systematics. Gonzalo is past-President of the Willi Hennig Society.

Symposium Understanding diversity through space

Plenary lecture

From gradual change to catastrophic events: new integrative models to disentangle what promotes spatial diversification
Isabel Sanmartín
Real Jardín Botanico de Madrid – CSIC (Madrid, Spain).

Isabel Sanmartín plenary lecture

Bio: Isabel Sanmartín is a senior researcher at the Real Jardin Botanico, CSIC (Spain). Her research interests include the development of analytical tools in biogeographical inference– especially model-based approaches –  and applying these methods to identify evolutionary processes that have shaped the distribution of biodiversity over time.

Symposium The rhythms of Life

Plenary lecture

What can macroevolutionary analyses tell us about the causes of global biodiversity gradients?
Dan Rabosky
University of Michigan (Michigan, USA)

Dan Rabosky plenary lecture

Bio: Dan Rabosky is an evolutionary biologist and biodiversity scientist at the University of Michigan. His research program spans a range of themes relating to the origin and maintenance of species diversity at both evolutionary and ecological timescales. His work includes (1) synthetic analyses to understand the causes of evolutionary radiations and global biodiversity gradients, (2) the development of methods for studying biodiversity dynamics in time and space, and (3) ecological, evolutionary, and systematic studies of several of the world’s most species-rich reptile and amphibian communities. Ultimately, he hopes to understand a range of loosely connected phenomena, ranging from ecological controls on evolutionary radiations to the uneven distribution of species richness across the Earth’s surface.

Symposium Understanding diversity through time

Plenary lecture

Fossils, time-trees and arthropod phylogenetics
Greg Edgecombe
Natural History Museum (London, UK)

Greg Edgecombe plenary lecture

Bio: Greg Edgecombe investigates the evolution of arthropods, with a focus on the early fossil record as revealed by sites of exceptional preservation.  He received his PhD from Columbia University in 1991, researching the ontogeny and phylogeny of trilobites at the American Museum of Natural History.  After a NSERC (Canada) post-doc at the University of Alberta, he worked as a Researcher at the Australian Museum in Sydney from 1993-2007, with a major focus on the systematics of Southern Hemisphere centipedes. Since then he has been at The Natural History Museum (London), where he is a Merit Researcher.

Symposium Big questions, big data

Plenary lecture

Large scale inference of gene and species phylogenies
Christophe Dessimoz
Université de Lausanne (Lausanne, Switzerland)

Christophe Dessimoz plenary lecture

Bio: Christophe Dessimoz obtained his Master in Biology and PhD in Computer Science from ETH Zurich, Switzerland. After a postdoc at the European Bioinformatics Institute near Cambridge (UK), he joined University College London as lecturer, then Reader. In 2015, he joined the University of Lausanne as SNSF professor, retaining an appointment at UCL, where part of his lab remains active. Since 2016, Christophe is also a group leader at the Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics.



Marie Stopes Award

  • Students who travel from within the same continent where the meeting takes place will receive US $600 each.

Kurt Milton Pickett Intercontinental Award

  • Students who travel from outside the continent where the meeting takes place will receive US $1,200 each.

Applicants will either present an oral presentation or poster at the annual meeting and are currently graduate students or have recently finished their Ph.D. (at most during preceding calendar year of the meeting).

Complete applications consist of a CV, a travel budget to justify the proposed expenses, and a title and abstract (not to exceed 500 words) of the oral presentation or poster to be presented at the meeting. Furthermore, applicants need to arrange for their major advisor to certify current status in a separate email to the chair of the Student Travel Award Committee. Incomplete and late applications will not be considered. Awards will be announced approximately two weeks after the application deadline.

Submit your application to the chair of the Student Travel Award Committee, currently Torsten Dikow (DikowT at si dot edu), in a single PDF document. The application deadline is July 1st.

All awards are made in cash at the annual meeting banquet.

All registered students (whether Stopes/Pickett awardees or not) receive a free ticket to the Society’s banquet!


The Willi Hennig Society has established childcare support for annual meeting attendees who give an oral presentation in 2018. Up to US $10,000 are available annually with a limit of US $1500 to each awardee. The funds can be used to help defray travel cost to the meeting or on-site child care at the meeting venue.

Complete applications consist of a CV, a short summary outlining the need for child care support (not to exceed 500 words), and a title and abstract (not to exceed 500 words) of the oral presentation to be presented at the meeting. Awards will be announced approximately two weeks after the application deadline.

Submit your application to Torsten Dikow (DikowT at si dot edu) in a single PDF document. Deadline to submit your application is July 1st.

All awards are made in cash at the annual meeting banquet.


The Willi Hennig Society awards up to three student prizes for presentations at each annual meeting. Awards will only be conferred if a majority of judges agree that a presentation is worthy of such recognition (none of these awards must be awarded at any given meeting).

The Willi Hennig Award – US $3000

  • normally awarded for the best oral presentation by a student at the annual meeting

The Lars Brundin Award – US $1500

  • normally awarded for the next best oral presentation by a student at the annual meeting

The Don Rosen Award – US $1000

  • normally awarded for the best poster presentation by a student at the annual meeting, unless judges agree that no poster is as worthy of recognition as any of the oral presentations, in which case the Rosen Award may be awarded for a third-best oral presentation by a student.

All awards are made in cash at the annual meeting banquet.