SRC Online Kick-off


Talk and Panel Discussion | The Dart from Source to Sea | Monday August 21st, 7pm – 8pm GMT+1 | Zoom

The Students for Rivers Camp is on our doorstep. Before gathering around the Dart, we kick off the camp with an online discussion on the future of Rivers. We invite you to join us! We will explore the pressures faced by river and coastal ecosystems worldwide, before zooming into the story of the Dart; the location for the 2023 Students for Rivers Camp. Please register separately for this event through eventbrite, so you will receive the link.



This event will be hosted by the River Collective, with Vera Knook, co-founder of the River Collective, initiating the session with some lessons learned from the River Collective’s work over the years, and Jasmin Dorinda, this year’s SRC director, bringing us to the River Dart (bios at the bottom). Subsequently, the following speakers will shed light on the threads and opportunities around the Dart river, as well as river and ocean ecosystems worldwide.

Dr Rachel Sweeney, Programme Lead for the MA Movement Mind and Ecology, Schumacher College

Rachel has worked in Higher Education for the past twenty years, expanding approaches to educating students through experiential and transdisciplinary learning. As a long standing movement artist, her own practice is embedded in eco-somatics, which she views as a tool to foster self and self-with-other understandings of our natural world, and her research actively seeks out transdisciplinary approaches to decolonizing body-place relationships, while engaging creatively and imaginatively with cultural heritage and sustainability practices. Rachel is a graduate of the BA Theatre Degree at Dartington College of Arts and holds an AHRC funded PhD from Middlesex University exploring site-based approaches to movement training working in nature environments.

Tom Dauben, Environment Agency Senior Advisor for Flood and Coastal Risk Management

Tom’s role includes developing strategies to help communities become resilient to flooding and coastal change and adapt to climate risks. He leads a partnership between the Environment Agency, Dartmoor National Park Authority and Devon County Council to deliver the Dartmoor Headwaters project. The project is working in the River Dart catchment and is using nature based solutions to increase resilience to flooding originating on the moor, whilst also exploring opportunities to restore and enhance habitat and store carbon.

Isabel Carlisle, Director of The Bioregional Learning Centre

Isabel is a communicator, educator and large-scale project organiser. Her experience in the London art world (where her work included writing as an art critic for The Times and curating exhibitions at the Royal Academy) led her to set up and direct the Festival of Muslim Cultures that took place across Britain throughout 2006. Isabel moved to South Devon in 2010 and created and led learning programmes for children and young adults with Transition Network. Since 2012 she has trained in Regenerative Development and Design with Regenesis.

Jane Brady, Director of The Bioregional Learning Centre

As a creative director, Jane has led and inspired inter-disciplinary teams for global design and architecture firms in London, Boston and San Francisco, creating comprehensive communication solutions for retail and corporate clients. She specializes in strategic overview, visioning, concept creation, design and branding, maintaining her own design practice in support of clients such as California Trout. As BLC co-founder, Jane brings design into the heart of BLC’s practices as a way to try things out, get stuff done, give form to ideas, spark conversation and inspire action. In combination with systems thinking and regenerative approaches there are no limits to its potential for good.

Vera Knook, Founder of The River Collective

After graduating as a hydraulic engineer at the TU Delft in 2017, Vera decided to dedicate her time to the conservation of rivers by joining Balkan River Defence in 2018. This is where the idea was born to bring together students from different disciplines but with a same passion for rivers, to turn knowledge into action for the protection of rivers. She has since organised 4 Students for Rivers Camp together with a passionate team of river lovers, and with them initiated the Home River Bioblitz, a world-wide citizen science event collecting biodiversity data around people’s local rivers. Currently, Vera lives in Peru and works with Marañón Experience to bring people, and conservation, to the headwaters of the Amazone.

Jasmin Dorinda, Director of the 2023 Students for Rivers Camp

Jasmin is a PhD Researcher in Environmental Sciences with Plymouth Marine Laboratory and the University of East Anglia. Jasmin is an ecologist who focuses on ecohydrology to answer questions about changing waterscapes and drivers of climate change from river to coast. Jasmin has previously worked for the Environment Agency and Devon Wildlife Trust, delivering on water quality and biodiversity monitoring targets and developing training programmes to support local communities in conservation ecology. The River Dart has been a great source of inspiration to Jasmin over the years, featuring in both her research and personal adventures along its whitewater rapids and through some of the UK’s last temperate rainforests that can be found in the Dart Valley.