David was awarded a chair in archaeological heritage through the University of East Anglia (UEA) where he is an Academic Associate in the Centre for Archaeology and Heritage in the Sainsbury Institute of Japanese Arts and Culture. He is also an honorary professor in the Kent Law School, and Fellow of the Centre for Heritage, University of Kent. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts (FRSA) and of the Society of Antiquaries (FSA), and a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA). In 2012 he received the Outstanding Public Service Award from the Archaeological Institute of America for his research on cultural property. He is listed by the Independent on Sunday as one of the Top 100 people to make Britain a more happy and contented place.
David is a former Rome Scholar at the British School at Rome, and Sir James Knott Fellow at Newcastle University. He then worked in the Department of Antiquities at the Fitzwilliam Museum before moving to Swansea University where he was Reader in Mediterranean Archaeology. He returned to East Anglia as Head of Humanities and then Director of Heritage Futures at the University of Suffolk.