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Madhvi Venkatraman

Graduate Fellow
B.A., Occidental College; Ph.D, University of Maryland, College Park (expected 2019)


Madhvi Venkatraman is a predoctoral fellow at the Smithsonian’s Center for Conservation Genomics. Her research interests include using genomics and transcriptomics to understand population history and adaptation in birds. Venkatraman’s dissertation focuses on high-elevation adaptation in the avian family zosteropidae, commonly known as white-eyes. She is particularly interested in studying ancestral plasticity to inform our understanding of how species will react to climate change in the future.

Venkatraman's projects include:

  • Rapid adaptation to high-elevation environments in the introduced population of Japanese white-eyes on the island of Hawaii
  • Gene flow rates and adaptations across an elevational gradient on Mt. Kinabalu, Borneo, in two passerine superfamilies
  • Population genetics of the island scrub jay post European settlement in the California Channel Islands

Venkatraman received her bachelor's degree in biology from Occidental College in 2013, and is currently working on her Ph.D at the University of Maryland, College Park.