Avoiding pitfalls in interdisciplinary education

A1 Journal article (refereed)

Internal Authors/Editors

Publication Details

List of Authors: R. E. Holt, P. J. Woods, A. S. A. Ferreira, H. Bardarson, S. Bonanomi, W. J. Boonstra, W. E. Butler, F. K. Diekert, N. Fouzai, M. Holma, A. Kokkalis, K. Ø. Kvile, J. I. Macdonald, E. Malanski, E. Nieminen, K. M. Ottosen, M. W. Pedersen, A. Richter, L. Rogers, G. Romagnoni, M. Snickars, A. Törnroos, B. Weigel, J. D. Whittington, J. Yletyinen
Publisher: Inter-Research
Publication year: 2017
Journal: Climate Research
Journal acronym: ClimRes
Volume number: 74
Start page: 121
End page: 129


As the world’s social-environmental problems increasingly extend across bound-
aries, both disciplinary and political, there is a growing need for interdisciplinarity, not only in
research per se, but also in doctoral education. We present the common pitfalls of interdisciplinary
research in doctoral education, illustrating approaches towards solutions using the Nordic Centre
for Research on Marine Ecosystems and Resources under Climate Change (NorMER) research
network as a case study. We provide insights and detailed examples of how to overcome some of
the challenges of conducting interdisciplinary research within doctoral studies that can be applied
within any doctoral/postdoctoral education programme, and beyond. Results from a self-
evaluation survey indicate that early-career workshops, annual meetings and research visits to
other institutions were the most effective learning mechanisms, whereas single discipline-focused
courses and coursework were among the least effective learning mechanisms. By identifying the
strengths and weaknesses of components of NorMER, this case study can inform the design of
future programmes to enhance interdisciplinarity in doctoral education, as well as be applied to
science collaboration and academic research in general.


Last updated on 2020-20-01 at 04:03