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Professor David Dunstan

Professor David Dunstan

Head: Physical Activity

Head: Baker-Deakin Department of Lifestyle and Diabetes

 

Deakin University supervisor

Baker Fellow and NHMRC Senior Research Fellow

+61 3 8532 1873

Professor David Dunstan is the head of the Baker-Deakin Department of Lifestyle and Diabetes within the Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition. He also heads the Physical Activity laboratory at the Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute. His research focuses on understanding the adverse health consequences of too much sitting and the potential health benefits resulting from frequently breaking up sitting time with active countermeasures. In particular, he has developed effective strategies to reduce and break up sitting time in adults with or at risk of developing chronic diseases and to support office workers to reduce sedentary behaviour in workplace settings. He is also interested in how best to implement efficacious ‘sit less and move more’ interventions at scale within healthcare settings for those living with or at risk of chronic disease. He was supported by external research fellowships for 16 years and has been a Chief Investigator on 18 nationally-funded studies worth approximately $17 million and 11 international studies from the UK, USA, Sweden and Finland worth more than US$20 million.

Professor Dunstan was a Clarivate Highly Cited Cited Researcher in 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021, placing him in the top 1% most cited for his subject field and year of publication. He has published over 340 peer-review papers and 5 book chapters and has a Scopus H-index of 79. Other highlights include: being an invited author on the 2016 Physical Activity/Exercise and Diabetes Position Statement of the American Diabetes Association; invited presentations at scientific meetings for the American Diabetes Association and European Society for the Study of Diabetes; and current Vice-President of the Asia-Pacific Society for Physical Activity (ASPA).

Achievements

  • Senior Research Fellowship, National Health and Medical Research Council (2015–2021)
  • Recognised as a Clarivate Highly Cited Researcher in 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021 — dentifying scientists who have demonstrated significant and broad influence, reflected in the publication of multiple papers frequently cited by their peers during the last decade. In 2021 there were 6602 Highly Cited Researchers named in the top 1% of the world’s population of scientists and social scientists.
  • Highly cited epidemiological research reporting that sedentary behaviour is detrimentally associated with premature mortality and cardio-metabolic biomarkers has informed new guidelines/position stands of the UK Health Department, the American College of Sports Medicine, the Heart Foundation and the Preventative Health Task Force recommendations on the likely importance of reducing sedentary behaviour.
  • National Heart Foundation Vanguard Grants – top ranked grant in Victoria (2014)
  • Future Fellowship, Australian Research Council (2011–2014)
  • VicHealth Public Health Research Fellow (2006–2010)
  • Identification of detrimental associations between sedentary behaviour (including television viewing) and premature mortality (Circulation 2010) and cardio-metabolic biomarkers in adults (Diabetes Care 2004); first experimental evidence demonstrating an attenuation in postprandial glucose and insulin levels through the introduction of short activity breaks during prolonged sitting in overweight adults (Diabetes Care 2012).
  • Creator of the Lift for Life community-based strength program for Australians with or at risk of developing type 2 diabetes — research to practice initiative providing access to strength training throughout more than 60 facilities across Australia.
  • Highly cited epidemiological research reporting that sedentary behaviour is detrimentally associated with premature mortality and cardio-metabolic biomarkers has informed new guidelines/position stands of the UK Health Department, the American College of Sports Medicine, the Heart Foundation and the Preventative Health Task Force recommendations on the likely importance of reducing sedentary behaviour.

Awards

  • Australian Institute of Policy and Science, Young Tall Poppy Science Award (2007)

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