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Dr Paddy Dempsey

Dr Paddy Dempsey (PhD) is a multidisciplinary medical research scientist, with groundings in human physiology, sport and exercise science and public health. He is a National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Postdoctoral Fellow currently based within the Physical Activity Epidemiology Programme at Cambridge University (UK), and continues to work in collaboration with the Physical Activity laboratory at the Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute and Monash University in Melbourne, Australia — where he conducted his PhD studies.

Dr Dempsey utilises epidemiological, mechanistic/clinical and interventional research methods to enhance research discovery and translation. His research interests are currently focused on the role of physical activity, sedentary behaviour (i.e. the ‘activity spectrum’), and diet (including their interacting effects) in the prevention and management of chronic diseases — particularly type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. He interrogates these areas using large epidemiological datasets (e.g. UK Biobank, EPIC, Fenland, AusDiab), meta-research, and through human intervention/clinical trials. His research on physical activity, sedentary behaviour and diabetes has been published in high-impact medical journals, has influenced international physical activity/exercise clinical guidelines for those with diabetes/hypertension, and has received international media attention.


  • Fellow of the Innovators in Diabetes (IDia) Programme, London, UK (2019–2021)
  • Finalist, Victorian Premier's Award for Health and Medical Research (2018)
  • Paul Korner Medal for the Most Outstanding PhD Student – Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute (2016)
  • Most Outstanding Oral Presentation, Monash Central Clinical School Postgraduate Conference, Melbourne (2016)
  • Monash Central Clinical School "Three Minute Thesis" competition winner (2016)
  • Gail E. Butterfield Nutrition Award, American College of Sports Medicine Annual Meeting, San Diego, USA (2015)
  • Emerging Scientist Award, Sport and Exercise Science New Zealand, Auckland, New Zealand (2011)


  • EPSRC GetAMoveOn Network+ Feasibility Grant (2019)
  • NHMRC Early Career Research Fellowship (2018)
  • Australian Society for Medical Research, Travel Award/Fellowship to undertake research at Cambridge University, UK (2018)
  • Australian Academy of Science & Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Travelling Award/Fellowship (2018)
  • Shepherd Foundation Grant for 'Active Ad Breaks: offsetting the adverse glycaemic and vascular consequences of sitting watching TV” (2016–17)
  • Harold Mitchell Foundation Travelling Fellowship (2015)

Publication highlights

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