Ruth Davidson

I am at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign as a J.L. Doob Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Mathematics and a Research Scientist in the Department of Plant Biology.

I collaborate with the laboratory of James O'Dwyer in the Department of Plant Biology. My professional mentor in the Department of Mathematics is Bruce Reznick.


Offices: 165 Altgeld Hall, 183 Morrill Hall

Office Hours Summer and Fall 2017: By appointment. Appointment requests (Skype too..) are always welcome! Email is my preferred method of contact, and the gmail account works better.

Acabo de pasar un semestre visitando CIMAT durante la primavera 2017 para hacer una investigación con Abraham Martín del Campo Sanchéz.

I just spent Spring 2017 visiting CIMAT to do research with Abraham Martín del Campo Sanchéz. If you are not familiar with the network of Mexican research institutes, I advise you to do a bit of searching for conference opportunities, available Ph.D., postdoctoral positions, and permanent positions available within this network.

To the right is a photo of Abraham and I taken near CIMAT. I posted it because if you're not having this much fun doing science, you're doing it wrong.

This is what science looks like.


Primary Research

My main areas of research interest are mathematical phylogenetics, ecology, geometric (especially topological) combinatorics, and algebraic statistics (with a focus on harmonizing data analysis with theory). My Ph.D. training was in theoretical phylogenetics and topological and geometric combinatorics, and I am always interested in finding new applications for my mathematical background.

Publications: Please see my CV for Publications. I update it regularly, with full links to supporting materials and arXiv information. uon of Distance File

Spring 2018

I am teaching Math 482: Linear Programming. Go here for the course website, homework, schedule, and announcements.

Upcoming 2018 Activities

Invited Speaker at the annual meeting of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution in Yokohama, Japan: July 8-12 2018.

Fall 2017

I will not be teaching this semester, but I will be on campus between August and October. Please contact me if you would like to meet.

I have a Visiting Scholarship at the University of Tasmania Fall 2017. This will coincide with the theoretical phylogenetics conference Phylomania. I will attend this conference. The week before I go to Tasmania, I will visit the University of Western Sydney to visit Andrew Francis.

Fall 2016

This Fall I supervised three projects in the Illinois Geometry Lab. Please see the website for project information. All three of the projects will result in publications that are currently in preparation.

Spring 2016

Here is a flyer advertising the graduate class "Polyhedra in the Wild" that I taught in Spring 2016, and the main course page.

I also supervised a project in the Illinois Geometry Lab titled "Discrete Morse Theory, Vector Fields, and Materials Science" that continued in Fall 2016.

Academic Family

In 2014, I received my Ph.D. from the Mathematics department at North Carolina State University under the supervision of Patricia Hersh and Seth Sullivant.

In 2009, I received my B.S. in Mathematics at the University of Washington, Seattle. My undergraduate thesis supervisor was Sara Billey.

In 2006, I received my A.A. from Seattle Central College, formerly known as Seattle Central Community College.

Selected Past Activities

Talks and Events : talks, activities and events I've organized, and other conferences and workshops I've attended.

(Some of) the Seminars I (try to) attend at UIUC

UIUC has a tremendous amount of seminar opportunities! If you are a student please consider making time for seminars. Seminar attendance will have a lasting impact-regardless of your career goals.

Mathematical Biology Seminar

Algebraic Geometry Seminar

Systematics Discussion Group (no website): Fall 2017 Time and Place 407 Morrill Hall, 11 am- contact me (though I am not the leader--) if you want to participate in this reading group

The School of Integrative Biology also has a nice mailing list for seminars-across departments and across campus. Contact me if you'd like to be added.

Program in Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation Biology (PEEC) seminar

Graph Theory and Combinatorics Seminar

Algebra-Geometry-Combinatorics Seminar (former co-organizer, see Past Activities)

Distribution of Distance Data Files