Professor Dench studied social anthropology at Cambridge and then social institutions at LSE. He worked for a while at the Institute of Community Studies in Bethnal Green before helping to set up social science faculty at Middlesex Polytechnic, now Middlesex University. He also worked in several developing countries setting up local open universities. Professor Dench returned as senior research fellow to Institute of Community Studies in early 1990s; now the Young Foundation. He is author/editor of about a dozen books on family, class and race issues.
The Rise and Rise of Meritocracy (editor) (WileyBlackwell, 2006)
The New East End: Kinship, Race and Conflict (with Kate Gavron and Michael Young) (Profile Books, 2006)
Minorities in an Open Society(Transaction Books, 2002)
Grandparenting in Britain: A Baseline Study (with Jim Ogg) (Institute of Community Studies, 2003)
"Just when Kant's formulation that 'the public exercise of reason should be free' had begun to seem so remote and exhausted, the Battle should reinforce one's faith in the enduring worth of dissent and of the free traffic in ideas"
Swapan Chakravorty, professor of english, Jadavpur University