Did you have your 5 a day? Defining transdisciplinary research through fruit!

Did you have your 5 a day? Defining transdisciplinary research through fruit!


We have previously featured blog posts from our colleagues of the  Integration and Application Network (IAN) when working together at the Belmont Forum workshop in San Francisco and at CommOCEAN in Bruges, Belgium at the end of last year.

This time IAN’s Bill Dennison participated in a Transdisciplinary Research Meeting, sponsored by the International Council for Science (ICSU) in Paris and wrote a number of blogs about his experience taking us on a journey from fruit salads, via iconic Parisian scientists to poetry and the Greek origins of transdisciplinary research. Here below a glimpse and to read more just follow the links. Bon appétit!

 Dr Bill Dennison is a Professor of Marine Science and Vice President for Science Applications at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES). Dr Dennison’s primary mission within UMCES is to coordinate the Integration and Application Network.

Transdisciplinary literacy: Seven principles that help define transdisciplinary research

We spent much of our three days talking about what constitutes transdisciplinary research, and many concepts were discussed. This blog attempts to distill some of this discussion and to put forward a version of what constitutes transdisciplinary research. In addition, I enlisted Emily Nastase, our new Integration and Application Network Science Communicator, to help develop visualizations of various aspects of transdisciplinary, which are included here.

The seven transdisciplinary principles are the following:

  1. Transdisciplinary research is best applied to complex problems.
  2. Transdisciplinary research is place-based.
  3. Transdisciplinary research is time intensive.
  4. The term ‘transdisciplinary’ relates more to academia than to research partners (sometimes called stakeholders).
  5. Transdisciplinary research requires well-developed leadership skills.
  6. Transdisciplinary research is intensely collaborative.
  7. Transdisciplinary research merges multiple knowledge streams and different value systems to create new knowledge.

On the trail of iconic Parisian scientists

Following a three day meeting on transdisciplinary research, I had a day to explore Paris in search of the trails of three of my scientific icons. My eighteenth century science icon from Paris is Antoine-Laurent de Lavoisier (1743-1794); my nineteenth century icon is Louis Pasteur (1822-1895); and my twentieth century icon is Marie Curie (1867-1934). Read more…

Talking about Transdisciplinary research in Paris

I attended a ‘Transdisciplinary Research Meeting’, sponsored by the International Council for Science (ICSU), which is part of UNESCO, and is based in Paris. The meeting was at the ICSU facility near the Arc de Triomphe. Our local host was Vivi Stavrou, from the International Social Science Council (ISSC). Participants came from four continents (North and South America, Europe and Africa), and they all had a keen interest in transdisciplinary research. Read more…