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Expert Interdisciplinary Work

I.  Interdisciplinary Experts’ Study (completed)

Our first study of expert interdisciplinary work examined interdisciplinary research practices among individuals and groups working in leading research institutions.

Included in our sample were researchers and administrators from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab, the Santa Fe Institute, the Arts and Science Laboratory in New Mexico, the Center for the Integration of Medicine and Innovative Technologies (CIMIT), and the Research in Experimental Designs (RED) group at XEROX-PARC.

Analysis of interview data and expert work enabled us to understand issues such as: (1) The institutional conditions that favor and hinder effective interdisciplinary collaborations. (2)  How expert interdisciplinary researchers define their problems of study and the strategies that allow them to integrate disciplinary views. (3)  The challenges and options involved in assessing the results of interdisciplinary research when individual disciplinary standards do not suffice.(4) The multiple forms of cognitive conceptual blending taking place in interdisciplinary work.


II.   Successful Collaborations - in collaboration with Dr. Michèle Lamont (ongoing)

Our study of success in interdisciplinary collaboration examines the collaborative practices unfolding in research networks at the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, the Santa Fe Institute and the MacArthur Foundation. This work integrates sociology of knowledge, epistemology, and cognitive science to shed light on the "socio-emotional-cognitive platforms" that enable the successful integration of disciplinary perspectives in research innovation. 

See also our related publications for the expert ID projects.