Modeling has a long and distinguished history in biology, and is becoming increasingly important as the growing availability of enormous datasets challenges the ability of biologists to extract understanding from knowledge . The construction of models for biological systems is however widely regarded with suspicion, partly because much modeling seems an empty intellectual exercise that fails to deliver biological insight. This series is launched with the objective of explaining the importance of modeling for biologists , and how to exploit the power and elegance of quantitative reasoning without losing sight of the biological reality.
The series is dedicated to our Editorial Board member Julian Lewis, on whose death in April 2014 the field lost an outstanding example of how to combine theoretical elegance with biological relevance .
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