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Honorary Professor, Exeter UK / Adjunct Professor, Monash Sustainable Development Institute / Visiting Professor, Surrey UK, University of Exeter

Professor David Pencheon
Honorary Professor Exeter UK (and Adjunct Professor Monash SDI and Visiting Professor Surrey UK)

David Pencheon is a UK trained doctor and was the founder Director of the Sustainable Development Unit [SDU]* for NHS England and Public Health England, established in 2007. He left the SDU on 1st January 2018 and is now an Honorary Professor and an Associate at the Medical and Health School at the University of Exeter, UK, an Advisory Group member and associate with the Wellcome Centre for Cultures and Environments of Health, a newly created trans-disciplinary centre, and a collaborator with the European Centre for Environment and Health and the Global Systems Institute, both at the University of Exeter. He has held appointments at University College London (UCL), and is a visiting Professor at the Centre for Environment and Sustainability (CES) at the University of Surrey, and in 2018 was a visiting scholar at the University of Sydney, Australia.

David Pencheon was previously Director of the Public Health Observatory in Cambridge from 2001 to 2007. He has worked as a clinical doctor in the NHS, a joint Director of Public Health in North Cambridgeshire, a Public Health Training Director, with the NHS R&D programme, and in rural China in the early 1990s with Save the Children Fund (UK).

His main interests and areas of research and publication are: public and planetary health, climate change, and sustainable development; large scale change; strategy development; and personal, professional, organisational and societal development – especially through an equitable post-carbon transition.

His current area of research is how we get practical and radical on creating the conditions most likely to promote environmental, social and economic sustainability for life promoting planetary systems.

He was awarded the OBE in the 2012 New Year’s Honours List for services to public health and to the NHS.


  • 2020–present
    Adjunct Professor, Monash University, SDI
  • 2016–present
    Honorary Professor, Exeter University
  • 2018–present
    Visiting Professor, Surrey University, UK