Photo of Nia A. White

Nia A. White

Head of Research and the Graduate School

  • 540 Citations
  • 14 h-Index
If you made any changes in Pure these will be visible here soon.

Personal profile

Personal profile

I am Head of the new pan-University Graduate School (launched in September 2014) and was previously Head of the School of Science, Engineering & Technology at Abertay University. The Graduate School is an essential component of our new R-LINCS (Research-Led Innovation Nodes for Contemporary Society) Research and Knowledge Exchange Strategy, to grow our RKE capacity and research excellence. All Postgraduate students, both taught and research, as well as research and academic staff, have access to the Graduate School which provides a comprehensive training programme within a central physical location of flexible working spaces, open to the entire research community, to promote integration and inculcation of an inter-disciplinary ethos.

I graduated from University College Cardiff in 1987 (BSc Hons Microbiology) and the University of Wales College of Cardiff (PhD SERC/CASE ICI Biological Products) in 1992, with a thesis entitled the ‘Biotechnological implications of the ecology and developmental biology of selected higher fungi’. I have over 20 years of research experience in Microbiology and Mycology, particularly on Serpula lacrymans, aspects of the ecology and biology of other wood and soil fungi, and on modelling the growth and interactions of filamentous fungi. I am driven by curiosity and the joy of working collaboratively.

I am particularly passionate about multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary research, and was involved in the development of SIMBIOS at Abertay – an environmental sciences research group with an interest in complex systems and the use of modelling methodologies, to gain a better understanding of these systems applied across a wide range of discipline areas (from epidemiology to soil microbiology and everything in between). Our new University Research and Knowledge Exchange Strategy R-LINCS is an extended, accelerated and enhanced expression of this approach.

I am Chair of the Self Assessment Team that led the Abertay University application for Athena SWAN bronze award.The Athena SWAN Charter recognises commitment to advancing women's careers in employment in academia.


I was previously the Programme Tutor for MSc Biotechnology and drove the development of MSc Medical Biotechnology, MSc Food Biotechnology and MProf Food & Drink Innovation within the School Science Engineering & Technology. My previous teaching expertise included Microbiology and Cell Biology, Techniques, Skills, and Experimental Biology, Biotechnology, Environmental Microbiology and Ecology, Biological Data Handling and Analysis, Forensic Microbiology, Serpula lacrymans and environmental control of building decay (invited external lecturer - University of Edinburgh, School of Architecture). As Head of the Graduate School my focus is now on Researcher Development and Research Degrees. 

I was the winner of the first Abertay University Student Led Teaching Award for Best Platform for Employability (2010).

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

Serpula lacrymans Agriculture & Biology
Fungi Medicine & Life Sciences
fungi Agriculture & Biology
fungus Earth & Environmental Sciences
Mycelium Medicine & Life Sciences
decay fungi Agriculture & Biology
biomass Agriculture & Biology
recycling Agriculture & Biology

Research Output 1992 2017

  • 540 Citations
  • 14 h-Index
  • 22 Article
  • 4 Chapter

Introduction to fungal physiology

Walker, G. M. & White, N. A., 22 Nov 2017, Fungi: biology and applications. Kavanagh, K. (ed.). 3rd ed. Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons, p. 1-36 36 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Open Access
fungus physiology
Schizosaccharomyces pombe
cell death
1 Citations

Toward modeling the resistance and resilience of "below-ground" fungal communities: a mechanistic and trait-based approach

Falconer, R. E., Otten, W. & White, N. A., 21 Oct 2015, Advances in applied microbiology. Sariaslani, S. & Gadd, G. M. (eds.). Academic Press, Vol. 93. p. 1-44 44 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

community structure
functional group
microbial community
9 Citations

Linking individual behaviour to community scale patterns in fungi

Falconer, R. E., Bown, J. L., White, N. A. & Crawford, J. W., Feb 2011, In : Fungal Ecology. 4, 1, p. 76-82 7 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
fungal communities
community dynamics

Modelling fungal colonies and communities: challenges and opportunities

Falconer, R. E., Bown, J. L., McAdam, E. V., Perez-Reche, P., Sampson, A. T., van den Bulcke, J., White, N. A. & Perez-Reche, F. J., Dec 2010, In : IMA Fungus. 1, 2, p. 155-159 5 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
special interest groups
fungal communities
mechanistic models
69 Citations

Investigating the effects of anaerobic and aerobic post-treatment on quality and stability of organic fraction of municipal solid waste as soil amendment

Abdullahi, Y. A., Akunna, J. C., White, N. A., Hallett, P. D. & Wheatley, R., Dec 2008, In : Bioresource Technology. 99, 18, p. 8631-8636 6 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Municipal solid waste
soil amendment
municipal solid waste


Development of an experimental model to investigate the community dynamics of selected saprotrophic wood decomposer fungi from the frigate unicorn

Author: Sturrock, C., Mar 2002

Supervisor: White, N. A. (Supervisor) & Palfreyman, J. W. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


Linking genotype to phenotype: a modelling framework for investigating individual and interacting mycelia

Author: Falconer, R., Oct 2006

Supervisor: Crawford, J. W. (Supervisor) & White, N. A. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis