The Information Content of Consensus Trees

  • Joseph L. Thorley
  • Mark Wilkinson
  • Mike Charleston
Part of the Studies in Classification, Data Analysis, and Knowledge Organization book series (STUDIES CLASS)


Phylogenetic Information Content, a class of measures of the information provided by consensus trees based on the number of permitted resolutions of the consensus, is introduced. A formula for the number of permitted resolutions of Adams consensus trees is derived and a proof given. We argue that maximising PIC measures provides a sensible criterion for choosing among alternative consensus trees and we illustrate this for consensus trees of cladograms.


Consensus Phylogeny Adams resolutions Information Content 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin · Heidelberg 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joseph L. Thorley
    • 1
  • Mark Wilkinson
    • 1
    • 2
  • Mike Charleston
    • 3
  1. 1.School of Biological SciencesUniversity of BristolBristolUK
  2. 2.Department of ZoologyNatural History MuseumLondonUK
  3. 3.Department of ZoologyUniversity of OxfordOxfordUK

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