The nascent field of evolutionary biomechanics seeks to understand how form begets function, and researchers have taken two tacks towards this goal: inferring form based on function (comparative biomechanics) or inferring function based on form (functional morphology). Each tack has strengths and weaknesses, which the other could improve. The symposium, “Melding Modeling and Morphology – Integrating approaches to understand the evolution of form and function” sought to highlight research stitching together the two tacks. In this introduction to the symposium’s issue, we highlight these works, discuss the challenges of interdisciplinary collaborations, and suggest possible avenues available to create new collaborations to create a unifying framework for evolutionary biomechanics.
Lindsay D Waldrop, Jonathan A Rader, Melding Modeling and Morphology: A call for collaboration to address difficult questions about the evolution of form and function, Integrative and Comparative Biology, Volume 60, Issue 5, November 2020, Pages 1188–1192, https://doi.org/10.1093/icb/icaa132