Rivers was educated at Beechen Cliff School, a boys' state comprehensive school in the city of Bath in Somerset in South West England, followed by University College at Durham University where he studied social science, and Falmouth College of Arts, where he obtained a post-graduate diploma in broadcast journalism.
He started in BBC local radio in south-west Britain, in Cornwall and Devon. After a stint as a producer at BBC Radio Five Live, he worked at Euronews in Lyon for a year in 2000. In 2001 he joined ITV News later being promoted to Crime Correspondent.
He was soon moved to cover predominantly international news based in London in 2014. He has covered a variety of international stories including the earthquakes in Nepal in 2015  and on-going assignments to Syria and the middle east.
Awards and Nominations
- Shortlisted Royal Television Society Specialist journalism 2006 
- Winner - 2009 George Polk Awards, for International Television Reporting 
- Winner Cine Eagle Award 2009
- Winner Amnesty International Media Award 2009 - A forgotten People
- Nominated - News & Documentary Emmy Award for Outstanding Continuing Coverage of a News Story in a Regularly Scheduled Newscast
Dan Rivers is the only child of Dr.John Rivers, an eminent nutritionist who worked at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine carrying out pioneering work on famine relief in Ethiopia. His mother is Dr.Christine Woodhouse, a retired biochemist. He is married to Australian journalist Selina Downes, who occasionally presents on Al Jazeera English. They have two daughters and live in Winchester, England.
- "Beechen Cliff School - Summer 2016" (PDF). Beechen Cliff School. 2016. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
- "Burma: tackle the disaster, not the media", The Guardian, 13 May 2008
- "Dan Rivers rejoins ITV News", The Guardian, 10 July 2013
- "Traffic-choked road to Nepal earthquake epicenter slows aid". PBS NewsHour. Retrieved 2015-11-21.
- "Dan Rivers - ITV News". ITV News. Retrieved 2015-11-21.
- "RTS Television Journalism Awards: full list of winners". the Guardian. Retrieved 2015-11-21.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on May 28, 2010. Retrieved June 13, 2010.
- "Amnesty International Media Awards 2009: full list of winners". the Guardian. Retrieved 2015-11-21.
- "Riva Media | Talent In All Areas". Riva Media | Talent In All Areas. Retrieved 2015-11-21.