Having spent most of my childhood in rural Colombia, I became fascinated early by wildlife and the study of living organisms. As a biologist, my research interests have taken me to explore the ecology and behavior of new and old world monkeys and apes, which I have studied in the field in different regions of South America and East Africa. Prior starting my Ph.D, I was working at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, in the primate molecular and genetics laboratory. For my dissertation, I intend to deepen my understanding of primate sociality, and the origins of social systems and cooperation among non-human primates. From an evolutionary perspective, I believe that flexibility in grouping patterns and plasticity in social relationships have allowed primates to cope with erratic environmental pressures.
I received my BSc in Biology at Universidad de Los Andes (COL) in December of 2013. After that I worked at the Tiputini Biodiversity Station in The Yasuni National Park, Ecuador studying the ecology and sociality of the white bellied spider monkeys. Later, I moved to East Africa to study the savanna chimpanzees of the Issa Valley in Western Tanzania, as the project manager for the GMERC (formerly Ugalla Primate Project). Lastly I worked in the molecular genetics laboratory at the MPI in Leipzig, carrying on extraction, amplification and genotyping of apes non-invasive fecal and bone samples.