Baker-Deakin Department of Lifestyle and Diabetes


The Baker-Deakin DLD brings together researchers and health practitioners to further our understanding of effective lifestyle approaches for the prevention and management of type 2 diabetes.

Building on Deakin’s and the Baker Institute’s long history of collaborative public health research, the Baker-Deakin DLD harnesses a shared focus on improving and promoting lifestyle approaches to benefit people living with type 2 diabetes, and those who are at risk of the disease.

The Baker Institute is a not-for-profit medical research institute. It is one of Australia’s leading multi-disciplinary organisations tackling obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease through research, education and patient care.

Deakin University’s Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition (IPAN) is one of the Faculty of Health’s research institutes. IPAN is focused on improving health and quality of life through nutrition and physical activity research excellence and building the next generation of research stars.

The Baker Institute and Deakin have collaborated over many years in the interests of improving public health, including formal research project agreements and numerous collaborations between academics. The Baker-Deakin DLD further enhances our strong relationship in research in physical activity, sedentary behaviour, nutrition and chronic disease management.

The Baker-Deakin DLD is led by eminent researcher Professor David Dunstan, Department Head. Professor Dunstan’s research focuses on the role of physical activity and sedentary behaviour in the prevention and management of chronic diseases. He is a Clarivate Highly Cited Researcher (since 2018) and has published more than 360 peer-reviewed papers. His research program has attracted considerable external funding from the NHMRC, VicHealth, and the National Heart Foundation of Australia, among others.


  • Read more about Professor David Dunstan

    David holds a joint appointment at the Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute and Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia with the positions of: Head – Baker-Deakin DLD; Chair, Lifestyle and Diabetes (Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition, Deakin); and Deputy Director/Physical Activity Laboratory Head (Baker Institute).

    David’s research interests span the role of physical activity and sedentary behaviour in the prevention and management of chronic diseases.

    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. 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. His current focus is directed at understanding how best to implement efficacious ‘sit less and move more’ interventions at scale within the healthcare setting for those living with chronic diseases and elucidating the effects of sedentary behaviour on brain health.

    Career highlights:

    • Professor Dunstan has published more than 340 peer review papers and was a Clarivate Highly Cited Researcher in 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022, placing him in the top 1% of researchers globally.
    • He is ranked second internationally for sedentary behaviour research (
    • 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.

    Read more here.

    Contact: or +61 3924 46313

Professor David Dunstan

Head, Baker-Deakin Department Lifestyle and Diabetes
Laboratory Head, Physical Activity, and Deputy Director Baker Institute
Chair of Lifestyle and Diabetes, Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition (IPAN), Faculty of Health, Deakin University