Dawn River

Dawn River

Department of Social Work and Social Care
Lecturer in Social Work
MA Programme Director

Contact details

Address
Department of Social Work and Social Care
Muirhead Tower
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston
Birmingham
B15 2TT, United Kingdom

Dawn is MA Programme Director; Lecturer; and Erasmus and Study Abroad Lead in the Department of Social Work and Social Care. Dawn is also based within the Institute for Research into Superdiversity (IRiS) as the LGBT*Qi Lead and member of the teaching team on the Community and Practitioner Research Programme. She is currently working on four research projects: ‘Queer Brexit: the migrant experience’; ‘Walking for Wellbeing and Community integration’;  ‘Arts-based Approaches to Social Research’; ‘Walking the Talk: using walking methodologies to get alongside and turn words into action’. Dawn is the Director of the Survivor Arts Project and curator of the Survivor Arts Exhibition.

Qualifications

  • PGCert in Academic Practice
  • CQSW
  • MA Social Research (Distinction)
  • BSocSci(Hons)

Biography

Having left school at 16 Dawn completed her A’ Levels part-time whilst working as a residential care worker. This experience inspired her to want to go on to study Social Work. She later completed a BA in Social Work at the University of Birmingham where she won the William Mortem Memorial Prize for Academic Excellence. Upon qualifying Dawn practiced as a generic social worker before specialising in Children and Families work. From there she went on to become a senior practitioner and a practice teacher and then the manager of a Duty and assessment Team. Dawn later went on to work within the voluntary sector (primarily within the fields of domestic violence and as a regional manager developing services for carers), and then in higher education as a Research Fellow at Warwick University. Dawn has also been involved within the Survivor Movement as a mental health service user.

Dawn now works as an MA Programme Director and as a Lecturer on the BA, MA and Step-Up qualifying Social Work programmes at the University of Birmingham. She also coordinates and curates the Survivor Arts Project and Exhibition and is the Erasmus and Study Abroad Lead. In addition to this she is the LGBT*Qi Lead at the Institute of Research in Superdiversity (IRiS) where she is also a teacher and mentor on the Community Practitioner Research Programme (CPRP).

In 2010 Dawn won a Circles of Influence Award for the development of the Survivor Arts Project and in 2014 she won an Award for Excellence in Teaching.

Teaching

  • Inter-disciplinary approaches to teaching for professional practice
  • Research skills and methodologies
  • Social identity and citizenship
  • Social work theories, methods and practice
  • Community engagement
  • Critical thinking and critical practice
  • International and cross-cultural perspectives in social work
  • Human rights and social justice
  • Domestic violence and abuse
  • Recovery through the Arts
  • Service user and carer perspectives

Research

  • Working Well in Higher Education
  • Queer Brexit: the migrant experience
  • Walking for Wellbeing and Community Integration
  • Social Work and the creative arts
  • Arts-based research approaches
  • Walking methodologies
  • How international perspectives can inform social work teaching and practice
  • Domestic violence and substance misuse
  • Domestic abuse within same-sex relationships
  • Service user and carer involvement in the admissions process

Other activities

  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA)
  • Member of the British Association of Social Workers (BASW)
  • Member of the Social Work Action Network (SWAN)
  • Member of the International Committee, Joint University Council of Social Work (JSWEC)
  • Strategic Director (Diversity and Inclusion), Allround GmbH
  • Member of UoB Rainbow Network
  • Founding member of Broken Rainbow
  • Founding member of EUinBrum

Publications

Fawcett, B., Fillingham, J., River, D., Smojkis, M. and Ward, N. (2018) Service User and Carer Involvement in Health and Social Care: A Retrospective and Prospective Analysis Palgrave Macmillan

River, D., Thakoordin, J. and Billing, L. (Dec 2016) Creativity in Social Work Education and Practice: Reflections on a Survivor Arts Project Social Work Education: The International Journal http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/02615479.2016.1266320

Matka, E., River, D., Littlechild, R. and Powell, T. (Dec 2009), Involving Service Users and Carers in Admissions for Courses in Social Work and Clinical Psychology: cross-disciplinary comparisons of practices at the University of Birmingham.  British Journal of Social Work, advanced online access 13 Dec 2009. https://academic.oup.com/bjsw/article-abstract/40/7/2137/1699593?redirectedFrom=fulltext

Humphreys, C., Regan, L., River, D. and Thiara, R.K. (2005) Domestic Violence and Substance Use: Tackling Complexity British Journal of Social Work 35, 1303-1320 https://academic.oup.com/bjsw/article-abstract/35/8/1303/1659012

Humphreys, C., River, D. and Thiara, R.K. (2004) Domestic Violence and Substance Misuse Services – Mind the Gap. Interim Report for the Drug Strategy Directorate at the Greater London Authority, Home Office.

Book chapters

River, D., Price, G. and Roberts, P. (2018: 57-75) ‘This Could Be Rotterdam (or anywhere): Working in partnership with service users and carers on an international exchange programme’ in Fawcett, B. et al Service User and Carer Involvement in Health and Social Care: A Retrospective and Prospective Analysis Palgrave Macmillan

River, D., Jenkins, H. and Lowe, T.K. (2018: 87-108) ‘Arts-based Practice: Learning from Survivor Artists’ in Fawcett, B. et al Service User and Carer Involvement in Health and Social Care: A Retrospective and Prospective Analysis Palgrave Macmillan

Book reviews

River, D. (2008), Review of 'Making an Impact: Children and Domestic Violence: A Reader Second Edition', in Journal of Social Welfare and Family LawVol. 30 Issue 3 pp 270-272.

Conference presentations

  • ‘Queer Brexit: the migrant experience’ (2018) Institute for Research into Superdiversity (IRiS) International Conference Racial Displacements: Peripheries, Camps, Resistance, Birmingham.
  • ‘Queer Brexit’ (2018) 4th InternationalEast Meets West Conference Faces of Modern Diversity, Vienna.
  • ‘Coproducing knowledge through international exchange’ (2018) Higher Education Authority Annual Conference Teaching in the spotlight: Learning from global communities, Aston.
  • ‘Teabags and Teacups: an arts-based research approach investigating personal and professional wellbeing within the context of working well in Higher Education’ (2018) Working Well in Higher Education Conference , Birmingham.
  • ‘Walking for Wellbeing and Community Integration: Informing Professional Practice through Community-based Research’ (2017) Global Perspective on Research Co-Production Conference, Institute for Research into Superdiversity University of Birmingham and Melbourne Social Equity Institute University of Melbourne.
  • ‘What Role can the Arts Play in Working Well in Higher Education?’ (2017) Wellbeing in Higher Education Conference, Nottingham.
  • ‘Survivor Arts: Creativity in Social Work Education and Practice’ (2014) Joint Social Work Education Council Research Conference Making Connections, Holloway.
  •  ‘Working in Partnership on an International Exchange Project’ (2009) Rebuilding Social Work Conference: Sharing Good Practice in service User Involvement in Social Work Education, London.
  • ‘Learning through International Exchange’ (2008) International Association of Schools of Social Work Biannual Conference Transcending Global Divides, Durban.
  •  ‘Nothing About Us Without Us: Service user and carer involvement in social work programmes’ (2007) Centre of Excellence in Interdisciplinary Mental Health Conference Making Service User and Carer Involvement the Norm, Birmingham.
  • ‘The Involvement of Service Users and Carers in Admissions to Qualifying Social Work Programmes’ (2007) A Higher Voice Conference Involving People who use services and Carers in Social Work and Post Qualifying education, Walsall.

View all publications in research portal