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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.

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


  • 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.
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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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