Transdisciplinary science

A future for transdisciplinary research?

We are grateful for the excellent and engaging responses and comments received. We wish to thank all those who took time to read, share views and criticisms. This new text is not a response; more an opportunity to re-frame some of our thoughts considering the comments received, and re-articulate others more clearly.


Take Seven: Looking at the future of transdisciplinary research

As the world navigates an intricate tapestry of complex challenges both present and forthcoming, the Centre for Science Futures' working paper, “Looking at the Future of Transdisciplinary Research” describes a vital pathway for evidence-based and society-driven solutions.


Transdisciplinary Bridges

The ISC’s discussion paper Looking at the Future of Transdisciplinary Research by Matthias Kaiser and Peter Gluckman is a necessary provocation to a research establishment that, in the aggregate, is not sufficiently meeting the challenges of the Anthropocene and the needs of a post-carbon transition.


Making transdisciplinarity real: transformations supporting transdisciplinary research

By now the transdisciplinarity (TD) movement, initiated through recognition of the complex ecological and societal problems we currently battle with, is adopted by many institutions. However, to solve the ‘wicked’ problems we face, we must recognise the value of TD to transform, beyond mere rhetoric, innovative institutional transformation as a transgressive game changer. Christian Pohl calls this the ever expanding ‘community of transdisciplinarians’, when he listed the amount of diverse platforms that already exist, both within and outside of academia.


Community of Transdisciplinarians

With great interest and pleasure, I read the discussion paper of Matthias Kaiser & Peter Gluckman. I second their analysis as much as their claim for institutional change. This is no surprise, because my workplace is ETH Zürich’s Transdisciplinarity-Lab. At TdLab we coach students and researchers in tackling sustainability challenges through knowledge co-production.


Funding and performing interdisciplinarity for Climate Action and Digital Transition

Science Europe published a study on “Interdisciplinary Research for the Green and Digital Transition”. This survey-based study, published in November 2022, maps the existing experiences of Science Europe members, i.e. European national research funding and performing organisations, and proposes recommendations to reinforce, develop and improve how inter-/trans-/cross-disciplinary research can contribute to tackling the climate crisis and digitalisation challenges. This post presents a conversation with the authors about their main findings.


Transdisciplinarity is Knowledge Democracy

“…we get enough rains to grow food and look after cattle in this area; but engineers want to supply pipe water; we just harvest and store water efficiently; and, we grow millet and fruit trees like jackfruit, mahua, tamarind,”….words spoken to me last month by a local tribal woman in Dumka region of eastern India. Her anguish was about ‘imposition of universal solutions without understanding the context” by external experts.


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