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Nicolson, Nicky

Aloe vera plant
Job title: 

Senior Research Leader, Biodiversity Informatics

Biodiversity Informatics and Spatial Analysis
Joined Kew: 


Qualifications and appointments: 
  • BSc (Hons), Botany, University of London, 1995
  • MSc, Computer Science, University of Kent, 1997

As Senior Research Leader in Biodiversity Informatics, I lead a team of specialist technologists and researchers tasked with curating, improving access to and exploitation of Kew’s exceptional data resources. These include global scale nomenclatural and taxonomic datasets, specimen catalogues and data on the distribution, morphology, usage and traits of plants and fungi. I oversee the development of novel tools and information services to maximise the use of Kew’s data, and to enable it to be efficiently curated.

My own research is focussed on the use of graph-based data models and the development of tools and services to enable efficient data linking - to build the foundations of the biodiversity knowledge graph.

Selected publications: 

Vos, R., Biserkov, J., Balech, B., Beard, N., Blissett, M., Brenninkmeijer, C., van Dooren, T., Eades, D., Gosline, G., Groom, Q., Hamann, T., Hettling, H., Hoehndorf, R., Holleman, A., Hovenkamp, P., Kelbert, P., King, D., Kirkup, D., Lammers, Y., DeMeulemeester, T., Mietchen, D., Miller, J., Mounce, R., Nicolson, N., Page, R., Pawlik, A., Pereira, S., Penev, L., Richards, K., Sautter, G., Shorthouse, D., Tähtinen, M., Weiland, C., Williams, A., Sierra, S. (2014). Enriched biodiversity data as a resource and service. Biodiversity Data Journal 2: e1125 Available online

Nicolson, N., Paton, A., Croft, J., Macklin, J., Morris, P., Whitbread, G. & Gandhi, K. (2011). Advancing the International Plant Names Index (IPNI). IBC 2011 - XVIII International Botanical congress, 23-30/07/2011, Melbourne, Australia.

Knapp, S., Paton, A., Challis, K. & Nicolson, N. (2010) 'Run for your lives! End of the World!' - Electronic publication of new plant names. Taxon 59: 1009-1010.