Management and Structure

Professor Nigel Seaton

Principal and Vice-Chancellor

Professor Nigel Seaton

Nigel Seaton joined Abertay University as Principal and Vice-Chancellor in 2012.

Professor Seaton began his academic career at the University of Edinburgh, where he gained a BSc (Honours) in Chemical Engineering in 1982. He went on to do an MSE and a PhD in Chemical Engineering at the University of Pennsylvania. After completing his PhD in 1986, he worked as a research engineer with Atkins Research and Development and with BP.

From 1989 to 1997, he was Lecturer in Chemical Engineering at the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of Clare College. He was a visiting professor at Cornell University in 1996-97. In 1997, he returned to the University of Edinburgh as Professor of Interfacial Engineering. Between 1998 and 2007, he was successively Head of the School of Chemical Engineering, Head of the Division of Engineering, Head of the Institute for Materials and Processes, and Dean of Undergraduate Studies in the College of Science and Engineering. He then became Assistant Principal (Taught Programme Development) and later Vice-Principal (Academic). In 2008 he moved to the University of Surrey, firstly as Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic Development) and then as Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor.

Professor Seaton is a Chartered Engineer, a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, and a Fellow of the Institution of Chemical Engineers.

Mr Mark Batho

Vice-Principal and Deputy Vice-Chancellor (University Services)

Mr Mark Batho

As Vice-Principal and Deputy Vice-Chancellor (University Services), Mark is responsible for strategic planning and resource allocation, and for the University's support services. He line manages the heads of department for estates and campus services, business development, information services, finance, business development, communications, human resources, strategic planning, student recruitment, student services, and research, enterprise and innovation services.

Mark joined the University in 2013 after five years as chief executive of the Scottish Funding Council, the national body responsible for funding teaching and learning provision, research and other activities in Scotland's colleges, universities and other tertiary education institutions. In this role, he was accountable to the Scottish Parliament for the combined annual budgets of £1.6 billion allocated to the Funding Council, and responsible for ensuring the delivery of the Scottish Governments policy objectives for further and higher education.

Between 2003 and 2008, Mark was Director of Lifelong Learning for the Scottish Government, with overall responsibility for delivery of government policies on higher education, further education and skills.

Mark has held a number of previous posts including Director of Social Justice for the Scottish Executive from 2000, and Assistance Director of Finance in the Scottish Office and subsequently for the Scottish Executive from 1999.

Professor Steve Olivier

Vice-Principal and Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic)

Steve Olivier

As Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), Steve oversees teaching and learning; research and knowledge exchange; portfolio development; quality enhancement; and quality assurance. He is also heavily involved in improving the student experience, and internationalisation. He line manages the four heads of academic schools (Deans), the head of the Graduate School, and the Director of Teaching and Learning Enhancement. He works closely with the Students’ Association, and represents the University on several senior Universities Scotland committees, representing the Vice-Chancellor externally when necessary.

Externally he serves on the UK Quality Code for Higher Education Steering Group; the National Steering Group for GPA Implementation; and the Royal Society of Edinburgh Interdisciplinary Learning Group; and on several senior committees of Universities Scotland. He previously served as the Chair of the Management Board of Scottish Higher Education Employability Forum, and was on the Executive Committee of Million+. He is also a member of the governing body of Fife College.

Steve arrived at Abertay in November 2005 as Head of the School of Social and Health Sciences, having spent five years as Head of Sport Sciences at Northumbria University. He was educated at Rhodes University in South Africa, and has worked at Rhodes, the University of Cape Town, the University of Zululand, and in the UK at Staffordshire University, Edge Hill University, and Northumbria University. He is a trustee of the Rhodes University UK Trust.

Steve has extensive experience of quality enhancement and assurance, research and consultancy management, course development, and teaching and learning innovation. Recent activities at Abertay have included comprehensive curriculum, assessment and portfolio development; research strategy development; leading the REF 2014 planning and submission; leading ELR (QAA) 2016; developing the previous strategic plan; leading Outcome Agreement negotiations with the SFC; submitting bids for additional funding; and refining the Abertay Attributes.

He is still an active researcher, specialising in the ethics of outdoor and adventure activities, and was entered by the university into the recent successful REF submission. He has published widely, in a number of areas including the philosophy of sport, research ethics, sports psychology, physiology, and morphology, and comments on academic matters for the education and general media. He is also regularly approached to present keynote and invited lectures and presentations on educational matters and change management.

A lifelong surfer, he is probably one of the few professors in the UK who brave our chilly waters on a regular basis. He also serves as a crewman in the RNLI. An experienced triathlete, he has been heavily involved as a participant in endurance events and in extreme sports. He played first class rugby in his native South Africa, and is an experienced and successful rugby coach at high levels, both in England and South Africa.

Ms Sheena Stewart

University Secretary

As University Secretary, Sheena is responsible for corporate governance as Secretary to Court; and for the provision of legal and audit services and Registry functions.  Sheena is currently the Convenor of the Universities Scotland Secretaries’ Group, a non-executive director of APUC Ltd; and has recently been appointed to the board of the Highlands & Islands Students’ Association. 

Sheena has worked at the University since 1991, working in a number of central roles with a focus on quality assurance and then on corporate governance.  She worked for the QAA episodically from 1995 to 2005 as a review co-ordinator on three institutional reviews in England and Scotland and a review of UK universities’ overseas collaboration. She became Secretary to Court and Head of Secretariat in 2009 and University Secretary in 2012. 

Sheena was an archaeologist at the Museum of London from 1987 to 1990 having previously studied archaeology at the University of Glasgow.

Ms Andrea Cameron

Head of School of Social & Health Sciences

Responsible for managing the School of Social and Health Sciences which delivers programmes and applied research in the areas of mental health nursing, counselling, psychology, sociology, and sport and exercise. A nurse and sport and exercise scientist, Andrea joined Abertay in 2003 and has held several roles since: Lecturer in Health and Sport Physiology, Programme Leader (Sport and Exercise) and Director of Academic Programmes. She has won awards for her work on enhancing student employability and works with a number of charitable organisations within Dundee as well as the Diabetes Research and Wellness Foundation.

Ms Susan Campbell

Registrar & Deputy Secretary

Responsible for admissions, registration, student records, examinations, timetabling and student data. Susan joined Abertay in 2014, having worked in higher education for over 20 years in a range of roles, in both central and faculty administration.

Ms Eilidh Fraser

Director of Human Resources and Organisational Development

Responsible for the strategic leadership of Abertay's HR function, and for taking the lead in the University's development as an organisation.  Eilidh joined Abertay in January 2014 and has extensive experience in HR in higher education, including leading the delivery of university HR strategy and services across the range of HR and organisational development.

Ms Jackie McKenzie

Director of External and Corporate Relations

Jackie joined Abertay in April 2016 to lead the new External and Corporate Relations Directorate which encompasses our work in Recruitment, Marketing and Communications, Alumni and Development, International and Business Engagement. Jackie has diverse experience at a senior level in the third, HEI and public sector and expertise in innovation. The External Relations team’s remit is to lead and support engagement with our many audiences including prospective/existing students, our graduates, the wider business community, third and public sector community and our staff. Jackie can be contacted directly at

Mr James Nicholson

Director of Student Services

Leadership and responsibility for student experience, equality and diversity, the Careers Service (including placements), Abertay Sport, Student Counselling, Student Advisory Service (including, student welfare, student funding, disabled student support and international student support), the Learner Development Service (including, study skills support), the Abertay Language Centre, and Chaplaincy. Having previously worked within Student Services at two universities in England, James joined Abertay as Head of Student Services in April 2001. He is also a governor for the City of Dundee Educational Trust.

Mr David Reeves

Director of Finance and Research Funding

David joined Abertay in July 2015, and is responsible for providing strategic financial insight, supporting transformational change and delivering financial leadership and direction across the University.  David has extensive financial and management experience in international food manufacturing and higher education.

Professor Gavin Reid

Head of Dundee Business School

Gavin C Reid is Professor of Business Management & Strategy, and Head, Dundee Business School (DBS), Abertay University, a post he has held since 2014. His other activities are: Honorary Professor in Economics & Finance, University of St Andrews; Member of the Competition Appeal Tribunal, London; and Advisor, Centre for Business Research, Judge Business School, University of Cambridge. 

Gavin Reid was born in Glasgow and educated at the University of Aberdeen (MA Economic Science; First Class Honours, Stephen Scholar); Southampton MSc (Economic Theory and Econometrics; SSRC Scholar) and Edinburgh PhD (Industrial Organization). He held posts at both the Universities of Edinburgh and St Andrews for two long spells, before joining Abertay. He has also held visiting professorships in the USA, Scotland, Spain, Canada and France, and a Visiting Scholarship at Darwin College, University of Cambridge. He was Founder/Director of the Centre for Research into Industry, Enterprise, Finance and the Firm (CRIEFF), University of St Andrews (1991- 2013). 

His research and teaching interests are inter-disciplinary, and lie at the boundaries of Accounting, Business, Management, Economics, Law and Finance. His university service record is diverse, involving all key operational areas (e.g. teaching, research, administration, finance, outreach, knowledge exchange, and internationalisation) at a senior level. His current role as Head of the Dundee Business School, involves management and leadership over a wide spectrum of disciplines, including accounting, finance, economics, law, marketing, HRM, innovation, entrepreneurship and enterprise, which are configured as three divisions. 

He has held many public leadership positions, including President of: the Scottish Economic Society, the National Conference of University Professors, and the Institute of Contemporary Scotland; and Chair of several research networks (e.g., two ESRC Networks: of Industrial Economists; and of Accounting, Finance and Economics; and the Research Forum, Scottish Institute for Enterprise, SIE).  He received the Medal of Honour of the Scottish Economic Society in 2017. 

Gavin Reid has a deep research record, in terms of publications, grants, projects, impact, and knowledge exchange.  He holds two higher doctorates: an honorary DBA from the University of Abertay, for his research in business economics; and a DLitt from the University of Aberdeen, for his research in small business enterprise. He has written ten research-based books, mainly on industrial organization, small business enterprise, entrepreneurship, venture capital and innovation. He is the author of over one hundred research papers, in the leading academic journals in business economics, accounting and finance. Many of his books have been re-issued in paperback and e-book formats, including (with Routledge): Small Business Enterprise, Profiles in Small Business, The Foundations of Small Business Enterprise, Venture Capital Investment, and Risk Appraisal and Venture Capital in High Technology New Ventures.

Dr Alastair Robertson

Director of Teaching and Learning Enhancement

Responsible for overseeing the development and implementation of the university's Teaching and Learning Enhancement strategy and related plans. Alastair joined Abertay in 2013, having spent a number of years supporting quality enhancement at a national level. His academic background is in solid state chemistry research.

Professor Carl Schaschke

Head of School of Science, Engineering and Technology

Professor Schaschke's principal area of research is high pressure technology and processing, focussing on the influence of extreme pressure on pressure-sensitive materials in terms of product and process development such as mineral oils and biodiesels.  Joined Abertay in 2014.

Mr Ian Simpson

Director of Operations

Ian is responsible for Estates and Campus Services, covering all aspects of estates and facilities management, student residences and the Student Centre, which incorporates hospitality and catering.  He is also responsible for health and safety, business continuity and corporate insurance.  Ian joined Abertay in 2004 from local government.  He is a Chartered Surveyor by profession and holds an LLM in Construction Law.

Ms Caroline Summers

Director of Strategic Planning

Responsibilities include developing and monitoring the University's Strategic Plan, internal planning processes and the University's Outcome Agreement with SFC. Caroline joined Abertay in October 2013, having previously worked at Glasgow Caledonian University, the Scottish Funding Council and the University of Stirling.

Mr Michael Turpie

Director of Information Services

Responsible for ICT services, corporate information systems, library customer services, library learning and research services, infrastructure services, technical and business services.  Formerly Assistant Principal Corporate Services at Telford College, Edinburgh, with 30 years' experience in ICT and latterly 16 years as a senior manager in further and higher education.  Michael joined Abertay in February 2010.

Professor Gregor White

Head of the School of Design and Informatics


Gregor became Head of School in 2015.  A graduate of Grays School of Art (BA Hons Design and Applied Art) and St Andrews University (Master’s in the History of Art), he has also worked at Dundee University, Duncan of Jordanstone and Angus College before joining Abertay University as Lecturer in Computer Arts in 2002, subsequently serving as Division Leader, Director of Academic Enterprise and latterly Research Director.

Dr Nia White

Head of the Abertay Graduate School

Responsible for strategy, leadership and operational management of University Research and Knowledge Exchange activity and member of the University Research Executive. A graduate of University College Cardiff (BSc Hons Microbiology) and the University of Wales College of Cardiff (PhD SERC/CASE ICI Biological Products), she gained post-doctoral experience at the University of Wales College of Medicine before joining Abertay as a researcher in 1992. Nia has had several roles since; lecturer in environmental microbiology, SIMBIOS researcher, Honorary Research Fellow of the Scottish Crop Research Institute, Masters Programme Leader, Division Leader, Head of the School of Science, Engineering and Technology and now Head of the University Graduate School, which was launched in 2014. She has over 20 years of research experience in Microbiology and Mycology and is Chair of the University Athena SWAN Self-Assessment Team.

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University Organisational Structure Diagram‌

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University Organisational Structure Diagram‌