The identification of molecular evolutionary mechanisms in eukaryotes is approached by a comparative genomics study of a homogeneous group of species classified as Hemiascomycetes. This group includes Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the first eukaryotic genome entirely sequenced, back in 1996. A random sequencing analysis has been performed on 13 different species sharing a small genome size and a low frequency of introns. Detailed information is provided in the 20 following papers. Additional tables available on websites describe the ca. 20000 newly identified genes. This wealth of data, so far unique among eukaryotes, allowed us to examine the conservation of chromosome maps, to identify the 'yeast-specific' genes, and to review the distribution of gene families into functional classes. This project conducted by a network of seven French laboratories has been designated 'Génolevures'.