The world around us with its rich biology and complex human societies results from complex dynamics that takes place at different time scales, including rapid individual changes, slow demographic changes, and even slower evolutionary changes. Together with colleagues nationally and internationally, Åke Brännström applies and develops mathematical and computational techniques to explore the aforementioned processes and the dynamics they give rise to. Much of his work is on questions in theoretical ecology and on understanding the evolution of cooperation.
Being a founding member of IceLab, he has for long been interested in applying mathematics to elucidate and understand ecological and evolutionary processes. During his doctoral studies, he investigated how mathematical population models can be derived from mechanistic assumptions of individual behavior and how they are influenced by competition, clustering, and spatial structure. After completing his PhD studies in 2004, he broadened his horizons to include evolutionary studies through postdoctoral studies in Austria and Japan. He is a guest research scholar at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Austria and have several ongoing international collaborative efforts with researchers at the institute. Since October 2017, he is a full professor of interdisciplinary mathematics at Umeå University.