1st Edition

Institutionalizing Interdisciplinarity and Transdisciplinarity Collaboration across Cultures and Communities

Edited By Bianca Vienni-Baptista, Julie Thompson Klein Copyright 2022
    278 Pages 22 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    278 Pages 22 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Institutionalizing Interdisciplinarity and Transdisciplinarity fills a gap in the current literature by systematizing and comparing a wide international scope of case studies illustrating varied ways of institutionalizing theory and practice.

    This collection comprises three parts. After an introduction of overall themes, Part I presents case studies on institutionalizing. Part II focuses on transdisciplinary examples, while Part III includes cross-cutting themes, such as funding, evaluation, and intersections between epistemic cultures. With expert contributions from authors representing projects and programs in Asia, Africa, Australia, Europe, Russia and South Caucuses, Latin and North America, this book brings together comparative perspectives on theory and practice, while also describing strategies and models of change. Each chapter identifies dimensions inherent in fostering effective and sustainable practices. Together they advance both analysis and action-related challenges. The proposed conceptual framework that emerges supports innovative practices that are alternatives to dominant academic cultures and approaches in pertinent disciplines, fields, professionals, and members of government, industry, and communities.

    Applying a comparative perspective throughout, the contributors reflect on aspects of institutionalizing interdisciplinarity and transdisciplinarity as well as insights applicable to further contexts. This innovative volume will be of great interest to students, scholars, practitioners, and members of organizations promoting and facilitating interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary research.

    Foreword by Christian Pohl

    1. Introduction: Institutionalizing interdisciplinarity and transdisciplinarity: Cultures and communities, timeframes and spaces

    Julie Thompson Klein, Bianca Vienni Baptista and Danilo Streck

    Part I: Interdisciplinary institutional spaces and timeframes

    2. Excellence with Impact: Why UK research policy discourages "Transdisciplinarity"

    Catherine Lyall

    3. Taking inter- and trans-disciplinarity to eye-level with scientific disciplines: Teaching and learning in the Complementary Studies at Leuphana College in Lüneburg, Germany

    Maik Adomßent

    4. Interdisciplinary projects and science policies in Mexico: Divergences and convergences

    Juan Carlos Villa-Soto, Mónica Ribeiro Palacios and Norma Blazquez Graf

    5. A long and winding road towards institutionalizing interdisciplinarity: Lessons from environmental and sustainability science programs in Brazil

    Gabriela Litre, Diego Pereira Lindoso and Marcel Bursztyn

    6. Interdisciplinary education and research in North America

    Karri A. Holley and Rick Szostak

    Part II: Transdisciplinary institutional spaces and timeframes

    7. The rise of transdisciplinary ‘boundary organisations’ within the Australian Tertiary Education sector: Beyond the disciplined university

    Isabel Sebastian, Dena Fam and Jason Prior

    8. A contextual approach to institutional change: Transdisciplinarity in Ghanaian higher education

    Beatrice Akua-Sakyiwah

    9. Development of interdisciplinarity and transdisciplinarity in modern Russian science and higher education

    Vladimir Mokiy and Tatyana Lukyanova

    10. "Leaping over" disciplines: Historical context and future potential for inter- and trans-disciplinarity in Chinese higher education

    BinBin J. Pearce

    11. Challenges and opportunities for implementing Transdisciplinary case study approaches in Post-Soviet academic systems: Experiences from Armenia and Georgia

    Tigran Keryan, Andreas Muhar, Tamara Mitrofanenko, Kristine Tanajyan and Lela Khartishvili

    12. Research Institute for Humanity and Nature: A Japanese center for inter- and trans-disciplinary consilience of socio-cultural dimensions of environmental sustainability

    Yasuhisa Kondo, Terukazu Kumazawa, Naoki Kikuchi, Kaoru Kamatani, Satoe Nakahara, Natsuko Yasutomi, Yuta Uchiyama, Kengo Hayashi, Satoko Hashimoto, Akihiro Miyata, Shin Muramatsu

    Part III: Intersections between cultures and communities

    13. Epistemic cultures in European intersections of Art‒Science

    Paulo Nuno Vicente and Margarida Lucas

    14. Making and taking time: Work, funding and assessment infrastructures in inter- and trans-disciplinary research

    Ulrike Felt

    15. Co-productive evaluation of inter- and transdisciplinary research and innovation Projects

    Jack Spaapen

    16. Conclusions: A comparative framework for institutionalizing inter- and trans-disciplinary research and teaching in higher education

    Bianca Vienni Baptista, Julie Thompson Klein and Danilo Streck


    Bianca Vienni Baptista, Senior Researcher at the Transdisciplinarity Lab of the Department of Environmental Systems Science (USYS-TdLab), ETH Zurich, Switzerland.

    Julie Thompson Klein, Professor of Humanities Emerita at Wayne State University and International Research Affiliate in the Transdisciplinarity Lab at ETH-Zurich, Switzerland.

    "The volume brings together a wealth of experience with impediments and successes in institutionalizing inter- and transdisciplinary research (ITDR) through case studies that uniquely cover the regions of the globe. Epistemic and organizational cultures matter and so do the different communities involved in building cross-border collaborations. As the world re-emerges from the devastating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, facing a global sustainability crisis, it is of utmost relevance to pursue the institutionalization of ITDR while enabling and empowering younger researchers to explore the new spaces thus created."

    Helga Nowotny, Former President of the European Research Council, ERC


    "This important volume offers fresh perspectives on how inter- and transdisciplinarity have been conceptualised and institutionalized around the world. Grounded in the latest empirical research, the volume bristles with practical insights, examples of best practice, suggestions about how best to support researchers, and the opportunities inter- and transdisciplinarity afford."

    Jane Ohlmeyer, Erasmus Smith’s Professor of History (1762), Trinity College Dublin, Ireland, and Chair of the Irish Research Council 


    "As interdisciplinarity and transdisciplinarity continue to expand in their global influence, it is imperative that we understand how to institutionalize them so that we can take full advantage of their insights and accomplishments. Edited by two leaders in the field, this book is required reading for anyone interested in building, stabilizing, and sustaining interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary programs."

    Michael O'Rourke, Director of the Center for Interdisciplinarity and Professor of Philosophy at Michigan State University