Isabel Marques graduated in Biology from Lisbon University in 2002 and after that she worked as Research Scientist at the Botanical Garden of Lisbon, where she received several international awards for plant conservation. At the end of 2005, she started a PhD in Evolutionary Biology in collaboration with two Botanical Gardens (Madrid and Lisbon), which was successfully defended in 2010, winning a European PhD awarded by Lisbon University. After that, Isabel led several evolutionary projects in South America (Ecuador) and then moved to Canada as a Marie Curie Fellow, funded by the European Union.
Recognizing how speciation and extinction have both shaped the evolution of different plant groups is a question that has greatly influenced the development of her career and of research outcomes. Because evolutionary questions are usually quite complex, Isabel generally applies a broad array of techniques to make inferences about the evolution of lineages. Her results have been published in more than 70 peer-reviewed papers and she is also the author of several dissemination publications for national biodiversity and international environmental agencies such as IUCN.