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All Team Members

Nicholas Ashbolt

Living Labs Lead

“It’s everybody’s business to understand how their individual and collective actions impact environmental antimicrobial resistance.”


Professor Nicholas Ashbolt is a world-renowned environmental microbiologist and the Living Labs Lead at SAAFE CRC. With an international research background in environmental microbiology that spans Sweden, North America and Australia, Nicholas specialises in the behaviour and movement of environmental pathogens in relation to water guidelines.

Nicholas’ work has contributed to the risk-based approach adopted in the most recent World Health Organisation (WHO) and United States Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) water documents addressing recreation, drinking and reuse guidelines. At present, his research is centred on investigating opportunistic pathogens and antimicrobial resistance (AMR) in biofilms within engineered water systems.

At SAAFE CRC, he leads the risk assessment and management initiatives across our research programs. He’s focused on identifying and prioritising the risks and pathways related to environmental AMR, establishing targets for critical control point management, and shaping future policies and regulations to enhance antimicrobial stewardship.

Nicholas is also laying the foundations for our Living Labs program, which will allow us to monitor and conduct risk assessments as well as technology demonstrations in the ‘real world’. The program will help identify where management actions could be best placed, and to understand the cost ramifications of different management strategies.

Nicholas’ other notable positions include: Peter Teasdale Chair in Environmental Health Risk Assessment at the University of South Australia’s Future Industries Institute (2023-present), Dean, Faculty of Science and Engineering at Southern Cross University (2019-2023), and Alberta Innovates Chair in Waterborne Disease Prevention in the University of Alberta’s School of Public Health (2013-2019).