Appetite for health rewarded
The Director of Deakin’s Centre for Physical Activity and Nutrition Research (C-PAN), Alfred Deakin Professor David Crawford has received a prestigious Fellowship from the lead international society in his field.
The Fellowship has been bestowed by the International Society for Behavioural Nutrition and Physical Activity (ISBNPA) and was announced at the Society’s annual meeting in San Diego on May 22.
The ISBNPA is the leading international society in advancing research on nutrition behaviour and physical activity, with the aim of supporting “the betterment of human health worldwide.”
The Fellowship recognises 12 years of active involvement with ISBNPA. Professor Crawford was founding executive member of ISBNPA and has been editor-in-chief of its journal, Chair of its 2011 scientific conference (hosted by Deakin in Melbourne), and, most recently, was ISBNPA’s President, in 2011/12.
“The Society has been important to me personally and to my research team,” Professor Crawford said.
“I feel very honoured to be appointed an ISBNPA Fellow. I have forged strong friendships and research collaborations through the Society, which have allowed C-PAN to become involved in several EU-funded studies and World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) research studies, as well as being part of an active exchange program between C-PAN, the EMGO Research Institute in Amsterdam and the University of Ghent.”
Deakin’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Lee Astheimer congratulated Professor Crawford on his appointment. “It is a great confirmation of the value of Professor Crawford’s and C-PAN’s contributions to society and their discipline,” Professor Astheimer said.
Professor Crawford has overseen the transformation of C-PAN from a small centre with just four staff and no PhD students a decade ago, to its current cohort of over 60 PhD students and over 50 staff, and an income of over $3.5 million in external research funding each year.
C-PAN is a multi-disciplinary research centre recognised internationally for its expertise in nutrition, physical activity, sedentary behaviour and obesity. Much of Professor Crawford’s research has been concerned with children and their families, and with examining socio-economic differences in nutrition and physical activity. His research has involved large scale population studies and intervention projects.
“The work that we’re doing at C-PAN is about addressing problems relating to poor diet and physical inactivity in the developed world, and, increasingly, in the developing world, that have a direct effect on people’s quality of life,” Professor Crawford said.
“Our research is solutions focussed,” he noted. “As one example, the Melbourne Infant Program, which was set up by two C-PAN researchers to support first time parents, has recently been picked up by the Victorian Department of Health and is now being rolled out across the state.”
“ISBNPA aligns very closely with C-PAN, in both research focus and in building the skills of young researchers. Some of the most senior people at C-PAN began as PhD students or post-doctoral researchers with us. We have supported and developed them, and now they are helping to develop the next generation of researchers.”