South Devon Bioregional Learning Centre

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The Bioregional learning centre is a Community Interest Company (CIC) located in South Devon. It aims at fostering economic and ecological resilience in the bioregion of South Devon, by connecting transformative actors in a learning network [1].


The South Devon Bioregional Learning Centre was initiated as an experiment in applying the philosophy of the Transition movement at regional scale, inspired by and building on the work of Transition Town Totnes. Its approach is based on Bioregionalism and economic localisation.


The work of the Bioregional Learning Centre takes as a starting point the idea that the whole region is a tapestry for learning. It puts this into practice in several ways:

  • Undertaking learning journeys to find out what’s happening in different places in areas such as food, health, social enterprise and energy, in order to develop a full picture of what’s working, and not working, and of the key needs.
  • Mapping regional stakeholders.
  • Bringing together actors from different sectors to create a climate resilience strategy for the region.

The Bioregional Learning Centre carries out four different interlocking programmes.

The ecology programme is about reducing impacts on the environment by human behaviour focusing on the health of a local river.
The arts and design programme is about making the bioregions character tangible to enhance the sense of belonging of local residents.
The economy programme is about building a local economy that enables sustainable and low-carbon ways of producing and trading.
The learning programme creates ways of learning based on direct experience and real-world problem-solving. South Devon intends to model as a learning region for sustainability as a part of the United Nations University [1].


The Bioregional Learning Centre made a joint application, along with Plymouth University, to become a UN regional centre for education for sustainable development. It is one of the existing regional cases informing the Sustainable Communities Programme.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Bioregional learning centre, n.d., accessed 09.102019, <>.