Professor Bryony James

BEng(Hons) Bath, PhD, MRSNZ


I received my undergraduate degree in Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Bath, England in 1993 and my PhD in Materials Engineering at the University of Auckland in 1998.

I am currently a Professor in the Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering with a research and teaching focus on Materials Science.  

Research | Current

My research is based on characterising material structure and composition, at a variety of length scales, and since 2005 I have developed a research programme in the structure of food based materials, in particular the influence of microstructure on food properties. I am particularly interested in developing the appropriate tools and techniques that allow us to investigate the macro-, micro- and nano-structures present in manufactured and natural food products.

My current research projects include examining the impact of food structure on oral breakdown, work that began as part of the “Food Structure Platform” in conjunction with Plant and Food Research and Massey University. Amongst other projects my research group is looking at the impact of food structure and textural complexity on satiation and satiety. I have a PhD student conducting a project examining chocolate structure and rheology, and smaller projects on meat structure and tenderness are ongoing. In conjunction with Pernod Ricard NZ, and with collaboration from the University of Bath, one of my PhD students is looking at novel ways of removing proteins from wine. 

Research groups


Teaching | Current

  • CHEMMAT 121 - Materials Science
  • CHEMMAT 724 - Advanced Materials Characterisation


Postgraduate supervision

Current Doctoral students:

  • Huanhuan Zhao, Chocolate structure/property relationships
  • Philip Herrington, Diffusion and reaction of oxygen in bitumen films.
  • Yilin Li, Chocolate, oral processing and functional ingredients
  • Yilin Zhong, Textural complexity and satiation


Recipient of Ako Aotearoa National Tertiary Teaching Excellence Award, 2013


Deputy Dean (Research), Faculty of Engineering

Areas of expertise

  • Relating food structure to food functional properties (texture and nutrition)
  • Materials Characterisation
  • Surface Science and Engineering

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Zhao, H., Bingol, G., & James, B. J. (2018). Influence of non-fat particulate network on fat bloom development in a model chocolate. Journal of Food Engineering, 225, 12-17. 10.1016/j.jfoodeng.2018.01.006
  • Zhao, H., Young, A. K., & James, B. J. (2018). Effects of Fat Polymorphic Transformation and Nonfat Particle Size Distribution on the Surface Changes of Untempered Model Chocolate, Based on Solid Cocoa Mass. Journal of food science, 83 (4), 998-1004. 10.1111/1750-3841.14108
  • Shi, H., Burmeister, D. M., Frost, A., Patterson, D. A., & James, B. (2018). Towards continuous wine fining: Materials characterisation and crossflow performance testing of polymer-bentonite mixed matrix membranes. Asia-Pacific Journal of Chemical Engineering, 13 (1), e2148-e2148. 10.1002/apj.2148
  • Rodrigues, S. A., Selway, N., Morgenstern, M. P., Motoi, L., Stokes, J. R., & James, B. J. (2017). Lubrication of chocolate during oral processing. Food and Function10.1039/C6FO00950F
  • Tang, J., Larsen, D. S., Ferguson, L., & James, B. J. (2017). Textural complexity model foods assessed with instrumental and sensory measurements. Journal of Texture Studies, 48 (1), 9-22. 10.1111/jtxs.12188
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Lynnette Ferguson
  • Young, A. K., Cheong, J. N., Foster, K. D., Hedderley, D. I., Morgenstern, M. P., & James, B. J. (2016). Exploring the Links Between Texture Perception and Bolus Properties Throughout Oral Processing. Part 2: Bolus Mechanical and Rheological Properties. Journal of Texture Studies, 47 (6), 474-483. 10.1111/jtxs.12186
  • Young, A. K., Cheong, J. N., Foster, K. D., Hedderley, D. I., Morgenstern, M. P., & James, B. J. (2016). Exploring the Links Between Texture Perception and Bolus Properties Throughout oral Processing. Part 1: Breakdown Paths. Journal of Texture Studies, 47 (6), 461-473. 10.1111/jtxs.12185
  • Yang, S. W., Watkinson, P., Gillies, G., & James, B. J. (2016). Microstructural transformations in anisotropy and melt-stretch properties of low moisture part skim mozzarella cheese. International Dairy Journal, 62, 19-27. 10.1016/j.idairyj.2016.06.013


Contact details

Primary office location

Level 5, Room 505
New Zealand

Web links