Calculated based on number of publications stored in Pure and citations from Scopus

Research activity per year

Personal profile

Research Biography

Tahna is currrently a Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Social Impact Flinders. Tahna’s experience is unique, having worked in government, community and academia. Those who work with Tahna know her as an advocate for evidence-informed public health, equity, and liveable communities achieved through intersectoral collaboration.

Tahna has particular expertise in knowledge translation, research impact and evidence-informed decision-making, with experience spanning boundaries between evidence generation, teaching, policy and practice.
Tahna has a PhD Health Sciences, preceded by a Graduate certificate clinical trials management and Bachelor Health science (Life science).

Tahna has training in both qualitative and quantitative research, and has over 20-years' experience in health promotion and public health policy, evaluation, university teaching and research.

Tahna joined the team that is now CSI Flinders in mid-2021, to apply her knowledge brokering experience to an ARC-funded linkage research project with the South Australian food assistance sector. The project aims to translate principles into good practice and collective impact.

Tahna also provides research consultancy services for organisations, engaging people to ensure that research investments are useful, relevant and have impact.

Research Expertise

Tahna has expertise in knowledge translation, evidence-informed decision-making, research impact, health promotion, public health, public policy,  food relief services sector, and evaluation.

Supervisor Philosophy

As someone who has benefited from past supervision, mentoring, and from collaboration and networking with other professionals, my supervision style is engaged, collaborative, and person-centred.

As you take on the responsibility of a PhD or Masters degree, you will go through different stages as you transition from student to scholar. My supervision and guidance will go through different stages too, with varying levels of support and instruction according to your situation, circumstances, and stage of candidature. I respond to individual needs with varying degrees of direction, training, coaching, and delegation.

I am open, communicative, and trustworthy. I enjoy the mentoring and interpersonal relationship that supervision offers, and will work in partnership with you and your co-supervisors.

Research Collaborations

Tahna is involved in several collaborations that span research, policy and practice.
Currently, an ARC-Linkage project "Towards 'zero hunger': improving food relief services in Australia" partners with SA Government (Department of Human Services, Preventive Health SA), Anglicare SA, Foodbank SA NT,  The Food Centre,  and the Centre for Health in All Policies Research Translation. The project aims to translate the SA Food Relief Charter principles into practice aims to improve the effectiveness of the food relief sector in meeting the needs of >5m Australians experiencing food insecurity annually. Following an innovative co-design process with sector stakeholders, volunteers and clients, this project investigates elements of food relief service models that satisfy emergency needs as well as address root causes of food insecurity. Among the knowledge outputs so far is a tool for self-assessment of food relief services (in development), which is the first of it's kind, aiming to support food relief services that are dignified, nutritious, and that 'go beyond food', to also connect people to social supports, services and opportunities, to support pathways for clients out of food insecurity.

Tahna and her colleagues regularly participate in the South Australian Food Relief Community of Practice. Through commissioned projects and voluntary service, Tahna engages with and supports community sector organisations and local governments to evolve evolve food relief service and community food retail models, and expand and evaluate alternative affordable food provision models (such as social supermarkets).

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, Practical lifestyle modification for improving obesity and metabolic syndrome: a randomised controlled trial, University of South Australia

Award Date: 26 Mar 2009

External positions

Senior Research Fellow, University of South Australia

6 Jul 20217 Jan 2021

Editorial board member, BMC Implementation Science Communications, BioMed Central Ltd.

25 Feb 2020 → …


  • Registered

Research Areas

  • Business

Supervisory Interests

  • Knowledge translation
  • Evidence based implementation
  • Health promotion policy
  • Public health
  • Food security
  • Intersectoral collaboration
  • Collective action
  • Social entrepreneurship
  • Social impact
  • Community development and participatory practice


  • RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
  • H Social Sciences (General)


Dive into the research topics where Tahna Pettman is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
  • 1 Similar Profiles

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or