Avoiding pitfalls in interdisciplinary education

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. RomagnoniMartin Snickars, Anna Törnroos, Benjamin Weigel, J. D. Whittington, J. Yletyinen

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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 inresearch per se, but also in doctoral education. We present the common pitfalls of interdisciplinaryresearch in doctoral education, illustrating approaches towards solutions using the Nordic Centrefor Research on Marine Ecosystems and Resources under Climate Change (NorMER) researchnetwork as a case study. We provide insights and detailed examples of how to overcome some ofthe challenges of conducting interdisciplinary research within doctoral studies that can be appliedwithin any doctoral/postdoctoral education programme, and beyond. Results from a self-evaluation survey indicate that early-career workshops, annual meetings and research visits toother institutions were the most effective learning mechanisms, whereas single discipline-focusedcourses and coursework were among the least effective learning mechanisms. By identifying thestrengths and weaknesses of components of NorMER, this case study can inform the design offuture programmes to enhance interdisciplinarity in doctoral education, as well as be applied toscience collaboration and academic research in general. 

Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)121–129
JournalClimate Research
Publication statusPublished - 2017
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

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