Dacotah-Victoria Splichalova

Portrait photo of Dacotah-Victoria Splichalova

Dacotah-Victoria Splichalova

PhD Student, Public Scholar, Mitacs Graduate Scholar, Four Year Doctoral Fellowship Recipient

Contact Details


Research Interests

Community-based research, Participatory action research, Storytelling, Water governance, Water security


Dacotah-Victoria Splichalova is a storyteller, water researcher, a surfer, fisherwoman, and photographer. A UBC Public Scholar and MITACS Graduate Scholar, Dacotah-Victoria is a second-year Ph.D. student in the Resources Management and Environment and Sustainability program at the University of British Columbia, she is supervised by Dr. Leila Harris.

Her research interests centre on storytelling coupled with people’s relations and lived experiences with water in the face of water (in)security. She explores these dimensions, namely elements beyond the quantity and quality of water that may include: culture, values, expression and identity through her engagement in community-arts-based methods i.e., storytelling, performance theatre, and participatory filmmaking as a means to encourage different responses to – and conversations around water (in)security. Collaborative aims of Dacotah-Victoria’s research include generating a broader discourse towards informing experiences of individual’s water use, access to water, well-being and promoting policy actions to address water (in)security across cultures, geographies, and scales.

In recent years, Dacotah-Victoria’s water work has taken her to Costa Rica, Panama, Nicaragua, South Africa, Australia, the United States, and Ireland. Prior to the pursuit of her Ph.D., Dacotah-Victoria completed a year-long sabbatical employed in Dublin as the Communications and Policy Officer for SWAN (Sustainable Water Network), the only water-focused organization in Ireland working at the national-level to protect and preserve Ireland’s heritage waterways.

Dacotah received her Masters of Science degree from Oregon State University working under the supervision of Dr. Aaron T. Wolf. Implementing the methodological approaches and research tools of community participatory action research, videography and storytelling, her MSc research examined water cooperation and water security across the Sixaola River Basin, an international transboundary river basin shared between Costa Rica, Panama and the indigenous communities of the Bríbrí, Naso, Cabecar, Brunca and Ngöbe residing there.

Dacotah-Victoria holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Oregon State University majoring in Philosophy, Writing, with concentrations on environmental philosophy, the philosophy of science and peace studies. During her BSc studies, she conducted her own research at The California Institute of Technology and at The Joan. B. Kroc Institute for Peace & Justice housed at the University of San Diego.

In addition to her academics and writing, Dacotah-Victoria is also a trained facilitator and mediator and is bilingual in Spanish and English.