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Research interests

I am an evolutionary biologist with a background in arthropod systematics and evolution with a specific focus on spiders. Recently the taxonomic scope of my work has has been gradually expanding to include more branches of the Tree of life such as vascular plants and vertebrates. In my current research I aim to understand how underlying evolutionary and ecological process generate and maintain biodiversity through time and space. To do so I work on assembling all pieces of a complex puzzle: from describing species and their evolutionary history to understanding how individuals and their genes interact with the environment and with each other. I am particularly interested in understanding what are the factors that govern the patterns of biodiversity at different spatial scales, and the responses of communities and individual species to climate change. I combine species evolutionary histories, contemporary distributional data and information on historical distributions, past and contemporary climate and other environmental factors, in an attempt to elucidate some of the primary mechanisms underlying the distribution of life on Earth.

For further information and current CV please look here www.dimitardimitrov.name


Academic qualifications

July 2005. Ph.D. in Zoology. University of Barcelona
September 1998. Master degree in Biology. Sofia University

Research experience and appointments

Postdoctoral Researcher September 2012 - present: Natural History Museum, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway.

2014 – Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) Mercator Fellow.

May 2013 – present. Affiliate Member of the ESI (Evolutionary Studies Institute) at the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa.

Research Associate September 2012 - present: Center for Macroecology, Evolution and Climate, Zoological Museum, University of Copenhagen.

Adjunct Research Associate January 2010 - present: Department of Biological Sciences, The George Washington University. 

Postdoctoral Researcher January 2010 - September 2012: Program of Excellence in Macroecology and Evolution at the University of Copenhagen. Center for Macroecology, Evolution and Climate, University of Copenhagen.

Postdoctoral Researcher November 2007 - December 2009: Department of Biological Sciences, The George Washington University. Discovering and interpreting the diversity of life: The Challenge of Superabundant Data.

Postdoctoral Researcher September 2005 - November 2007: NSF-PEET project on Systematics and Monography of Araneoid Spiders.


Biogeography and Biodiversity (BIO4230/9230) spring 2014, 2016 University of Oslo.

Phylogenetic Systematics and Molecular Dating – April 2015, January-February 2013, January 2011 University of Copenhagen.

Current Students

Sergei Tarasov - PhD candidate (co-supervisor with V. Gusarov and L. Bachmann). University of Oslo


Society of Systematic Biologists, International Society of Arachnology, American Arachnological Society, International Biogeography Society

Tags: Computational systematics, Molecular systematics, Macroecology, Biogeography and phylogeography, Phylogenetics, Biodiversity and conservation, Spiders systematics, Evolutionary biology, Phylogenomics


For full list of publications and relevant metrics please visit my Google Scholar http://scholar.google.com/citations?user=mfemh8gAAAAJ

or my Researcher ID http://www.researcherid.com/rid/A-9563-2009

  • Kallal, Robert J.; Dimitrov, Dimitar; Arnedo, Miquel A.; Giribet, Gonzalo & Hormiga, Gustavo (2019). Monophyly, Taxon Sampling, and the Nature of Ranks in the Classification of Orb-Weaving Spiders (Araneae: Araneoidea). Systematic Biology.  ISSN 1063-5157. . doi: 10.1093/sysbio/syz043
  • Liu, Nana; Hu, Huifeng; Ma, Wenhong; Deng, Ye; Liu, Yuqing; Hao, Baihui; Zhang, Xinying; Dimitrov, Dimitar; Feng, Xiaojuan & Wang, Zhiheng (2019). Contrasting Biogeographic Patterns of Bacterial and Archaeal Diversity in the Top- and Subsoils of Temperate Grasslands. mSystems.  ISSN 2379-5077.  4(5) . doi: 10.1128/mSystems.00566-19 Full text in Research Archive.
  • Scharff, Nikolaj; Coddington, Jonathan A.; Blackledge, Todd A.; Agnarsson, Ingi; Framenau, Volker W.; Szüts, Tamás; Hayashi, Cheryl Y. & Dimitrov, Dimitar (2019). Phylogeny of the orb-weaving spider family Araneidae(Araneae: Araneoidea). Cladistics.  ISSN 0748-3007. . doi: 10.1111/cla.12382
  • Xu, Xiaoting; Dimitrov, Dimitar; Shrestha, Nawal; Rahbek, Carsten & Wang, Zhiheng (2019). A consistent species richness–climate relationship for oaks across the Northern Hemisphere. Global Ecology and Biogeography.  ISSN 1466-822X.  28(8), s 1051- 1066 . doi: 10.1111/geb.12913
  • Eberle, Jonas; Dimitrov, Dimitar; Valdez-Mondragón, Alejandro & Huber, Bernhard A. (2018). Microhabitat change drives diversification in pholcid spiders. BMC Evolutionary Biology.  ISSN 1471-2148.  18:141, s 1- 13 . doi: 10.1186/s12862-018-1244-8 Full text in Research Archive.
  • Fernández, Rosa; Kallal, Robert J.; Dimitrov, Dimitar; Ballesteros, Jesús A.; Arnedo, Miquel A.; Giribet, Gonzalo & Hormiga, Gustavo (2018). Phylogenomics, Diversification Dynamics, and Comparative Transcriptomics across the Spider Tree of Life. Current Biology.  ISSN 0960-9822.  28(9), s 1489- 1497 . doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2018.03.064
  • Huber, Bernhard A.; Eberle, Jonas & Dimitrov, Dimitar (2018). The phylogeny of pholcid spiders: a critical evaluation of relationships suggested by molecular data (Araneae, Pholcidae). ZooKeys.  ISSN 1313-2989.  2018(789), s 51- 101 . doi: 10.3897/zookeys.789.22781 Full text in Research Archive.
  • Shrestha, Nawal; Wang, Zhiheng; Su, Xiangyan; Xu, Xiaoting; Lyu, Lisha; Liu, Yunpeng; Dimitrov, Dimitar; Kennedy, Jonathan D.; Wang, Qinggang; Tang, Zhiyao & Feng, Xiaojuan (2018). Global patterns of Rhododendron diversity: The role of evolutionary time and diversification rates. Global Ecology and Biogeography.  ISSN 1466-822X.  27(8), s 913- 924 . doi: 10.1111/geb.12750 Full text in Research Archive.
  • Dimitrov, Dimitar; Benavides, Ligia R.; Arnedo, Miquel A.; Giribet, Gonzalo; Griswold, Charles E.; Scharff, Nikolaj & Hormiga, Gustavo (2017). Rounding up the usual suspects: a standard target-gene approach for resolving the interfamilial phylogenetic relationships of ecribellate orb-weaving spiders with a new family-rank classification (Araneae, Araneoidea). Cladistics.  ISSN 0748-3007.  33(3), s 221- 250 . doi: 10.1111/cla.12165
  • Hormiga, Gustavo & Dimitrov, Dimitar (2017). The discovery of the spider genus Putaoa (Araneae, Pimoidae) in Taiwan with the description of a new species, including its web architecture. Zootaxa.  ISSN 1175-5326.  4341(1), s 97- 104 . doi: 10.11646/zootaxa.4341.1.8
  • Struck, Torsten H; Feder, Jeffrey L.; Bendiksby, Mika; Birkeland, Siri; Cerca De Oliveira, Josè; Gusarov, Vladimir; Kistenich, Sonja; Larsson, Karl-Henrik; Liow, Lee Hsiang; Nowak, Michael; Stedje, Brita; Bachmann, Lutz & Dimitrov, Dimitar (2017). Finding Evolutionary Processes Hidden in Cryptic Species. Trends in Ecology & Evolution.  ISSN 0169-5347.  33(3), s 153- 163 . doi: 10.1016/j.tree.2017.11.007 Full text in Research Archive. Show summary
  • Wheeler, Ward C.; Coddington, Jonathan A.; Crowley, Louise M.; Dimitrov, Dimitar; Goloboff, Pablo A.; Griswold, Charles E.; Hormiga, Gustavo; Prendini, Lorenzo; Ramírez, Martín J.; Sierwald, Petra; Almeida-Silva, Lina; Alvarez-Padilla, Fernando; Arnedo, Miquel A.; Benavides Silva, Ligia R.; Benjamin, Suresh P.; Bond, Jason E.; Grismado, Cristian J.; Hasan, Emile; Hedin, Marshal; Izquierdo, Matías A.; Labarque, Facundo M.; Ledford, Joel; Lopardo, Lara; Maddison, Wayne P.; Miller, Jeremy A.; Piacentini, Luis N.; Platnick, Norman I.; Polotow, Daniele; Silva-Dávila, Diana; Scharff, Nikolaj; Szűts, Tamás; Ubick, Darrell; Vink, Cor J.; Wood, Hannah M. & Zhang, Junxia (2017). The spider tree of life: phylogeny of Araneae based on target-gene analyses from an extensive taxon sampling. Cladistics.  ISSN 0748-3007.  33(6), s 574- 616 . doi: 10.1111/cla.12182
  • Gizaw, Abel; Brochmann, Christian; Nemomissa, Sileshi; Wondimu, Tigist; Masao, Catherine; Tusiime, Felly Mugizi; Abdi, Ahmed Abdikhadir; Oxelman, Bengt; Popp, Magnus & Dimitrov, Dimitar (2016). Colonization and diversification in the African ‘sky islands’: insights from fossil-calibrated molecular dating of Lychnis (Caryophyllaceae).. New Phytologist.  ISSN 0028-646X.  211, s 719- 734 . doi: 10.1111/nph.13937 Full text in Research Archive.
  • Heilmann-Clausen, Jacob; Maruyama, Pietro K; Bruun, Hans Henrik; Dimitrov, Dimitar; Læssøe, Thomas; Frøslev, Tobias Guldberg & Dalsgaard, Bo (2016). Citizen science data reveal ecological, historical and evolutionary factors shaping interactions between woody hosts and wood-inhabiting fungi. New Phytologist.  ISSN 0028-646X.  212(4), s 1072- 1082 . doi: 10.1111/nph.14194
  • Tarasov, Sergei & Dimitrov, Dimitar (2016). Multigene phylogenetic analysis redefines dung beetles relationships and classification (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae). BMC Evolutionary Biology.  ISSN 1471-2148.  16(1) . doi: 10.1186/s12862-016-0822-x
  • Tarasov, Sergey; Vaz-de-Mello, Fernando Z.; Krell, Frank-Thorsten & Dimitrov, Dimitar (2016). A review and phylogeny of Scarabaeine dung beetle fossils (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae), with the description of two Canthochilum species from Dominican amber. PeerJ.  ISSN 2167-8359.  2016(5) . doi: 10.7717/peerj.1988
  • Xu, Xiaoting; Dimitrov, Dimitar; Rahbek, Carsten & Wang, Zhiheng (2015). NCBIminer: sequences harvest from Genbank. Ecography.  ISSN 0906-7590.  38, s 426- 430 . doi: 10.1111/ecog.01055
  • Xu, Xiaoting; Wang, Zhiheng; Dimitrov, Dimitar & Rahbek, Carsten (2015). Using NCBIminer to search and download nucleotide sequences from GenBank. Biodiversity Science.  ISSN 1005-0094.  23(4), s 550- 555 . doi: 10.17520/biods.2015120
  • Huber, Bernhard A. & Dimitrov, Dimitar (2014). Slow genital and genetic but rapid non-genital and ecological differentiation in a pair of spider species (Araneae, Pholcidae). Zoologischer Anzeiger.  ISSN 0044-5231.  253(5), s 394- 403 . doi: 10.1016/j.jcz.2014.04.001

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  • Fernández, Rosa; Kallal, Robert J.; Dimitrov, Dimitar; Ballesteros, Jesús A.; Arnedo, Miquel A.; Giribet, Gonzalo & Hormiga, Gustavo (2018). Phylogenomics, Diversification Dynamics, and Comparative Transcriptomics across the Spider Tree of Life. Current Biology.  ISSN 0960-9822.  28(13), s 2190- 2193 . doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2018.06.018
  • Struck, Torsten H; Feder, Jeffrey L.; Bendiksby, Mika; Birkeland, Siri; Cerca De Oliveira, Josè; Gusarov, Vladimir; Kistenich, Sonja; Larsson, Karl-Henrik; Liow, Lee Hsiang; Nowak, Michael; Stedje, Brita; Bachmann, Lutz & Dimitrov, Dimitar (2018). Cryptic Species – More Than Terminological Chaos: A Reply to Heethoff. Trends in Ecology & Evolution.  ISSN 0169-5347.  33(5), s 310- 312 . doi: 10.1016/j.tree.2018.02.008
  • Holt, Ben G.; Lessard, Jean-Philippe; Borregaard, Michael Krabbe; Fritz, Susanne A.; Araujo, Miguel B.; Dimitrov, Dimitar Stefanov; Fabre, Pierre-Henri; Graham, Catherine H.; Graves, Gary R.; Jønsson, Knud A.; Nogués-Bravo, David; Wang, Zhiheng; Whittaker, Robert J.; Fjeldså, Jon & Rahbek, Carsten (2013). Response to Comment on "An Update of Wallace's Zoogeographic Regions of the World". Science.  ISSN 0036-8075.  341(6144), s 343- 343 . doi: 10.1126/science.1237541

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Published Oct. 15, 2012 2:58 PM - Last modified Dec. 9, 2015 2:53 PM