Tara Dean


1991 …2020

Research activity per year

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Personal profile

Research interests

Professor Dean is a Professor of Health Sciences who is an internationally recognised authority in the area of epidemiology of allergic disorders. Currently, she chairs the Food Allergy working group of the European Food Safety Authority’s scientific panel on Nutrition, Dietetic and Allergies.

She joined University of Brighton in 2016 as Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research and Enterprise) and has the strategic lead for all research and enterprise activities. She has led on the development of University’s Research and Enterprise Strategic Plan 2017-2021. She takes the lead role on preparing and the delivery of actions to enhance the University’s position in REF2021. As a member of the University Executive Board and the Strategic Planning group, she contributes to the broader leadership and direction of the University, and supports the Deputy Vice-Chancellor in academic planning matters including the annual planning and target-setting cycle. 

She is responsible for the Brighton Doctoral College and works closely with its Director to enhance the postgraduate research (PGR) student experience and to facilitate recruitment of high quality graduate students. In 2017, she was appointed as the Doctoral Training Alliance National Director for the University Alliance. In 2018, her portfolio of responsibilities expanded and she is now the institution lead on the Galleries, Theatre and Museums.

She is passionate about promoting women in STEM, and mentors a number of female STEM academics at universities in the UK. She was shortlisted for Mentor of the Year at Women of the Future Awards in 2015. Professor Dean is the Gender Equality champion for the University and leads on Athena Swan at the University of Brighton.

Scholarly biography

Prior to joining University of Brighton, she held a number of senior positions at the University of Portsmouth including Dean of Research (2011-2014) and Dean of the Faculty of Science.

Originally from Iran, Tara came to the UK aged 16, as an international student to complete her education. She completed her first degree in Biological Chemistry at the University of Essex and obtained her PhD from Kings College in London in 1989.

Following a post-doc at the National Heart and Lung Institute (now part of Imperial College), she moved to the University of Southampton to establish her own research team in the field of Asthma and Allergy. In 1996, she joined the late David Hide to establish the internationally-recognised Asthma and Allergy Research Centre on the Isle of Wight and completed her training in Epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. During her time at the Allergy Centre, she led on a number of seminal cohort studies focusing on epidemiological aspects of asthma and allergy, and also took up directorship of the Department of Health-funded Research and Development Support Unit for South East Hampshire and Isle of Wight.

She has published widely and remains research active supervising PGR students and working on externally funded research projects. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), in addition to her outputs, she was the author of two Impact Case Studies.


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