Data Science Insitute
Center for Computational Molecular Biology

New Population Genetics Textbook by CCMB Director Dan Weinreich

Daniel Weinreich, Director of the Center for Computational Molecular Biology, recently published a new textbook with MIT Press.

“The Foundations of Population Genetics,” released in August 2023, provides advanced undergraduates and graduate students with quantitative knowledge of evolutionary genetics, combining mathematics and computer science. The textbook introduces the mathematical foundations of population genetics to teach “the rich and deep structure of theoretical population genetics,” as Dr. Weinreich states in the book’s preface. The book is targeted at both students of biology and established investigators from other fields (computer science, medicine, etc.) interested in questions from population genetics. 

While the textbook covers advanced theoretical and conceptual approaches that underlie the many of the techniques used in the interpretation of genome-scale data, students are supported throughout by text boxes that review key background techniques.  Iit also includes many real-world applications and features instructor guides and resources.

"I wrote this book for my students,” says Dr. Weinreich. “Population genetics is intrinsically mathematical, and this book capitalizes on the pedagogical opportunities that its cumulative, principled, and extensible foundations provide. As a consequence, it teaches us to understand rather than to memorize. Nevertheless, the focus throughout is on biology; mathematics is simply the appropriate language. Put another way, the mathematics work for the biologist throughout the book, rather than vice versa."

Dr. Weinreich is Professor of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology and a Royce Family Professor of Teaching Excellence in Biology. He wrote this textbook on sabbatical in Montpellier, France. 

He acknowledges many Brown students and faculty for their intellectual contributions.