This chapter outlines how to conceptualize and predict adaptive evolution based on information about selection and genetic variation. It introduces and explains adaptive landscapes, a concept that has proven useful in guiding the understanding of evolution. The chapter also reviews empirical data to answer fundamental questions about adaptation in nature, including to what extent short- and long-term evolution is predictable, how fast is phenotypic change, to what extent is adaptation constrained by genetic variation, and how well adapted natural populations are to their local environments. Moving beyond selection and adaptation within populations, the chapter shows how eco-evolutionary dynamics will be shaped by biological diversity: that is, different populations and species have different effects on their environment.
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