Overcoming a paradox? Preparing students for transdisciplinary environments

machiel -keestra_jan-2018
Machiel Keestra (biography)

Community member post by Machiel Keestra

How can we adequately prepare and train students to navigate transdisciplinary environments? How can we develop hybrid spaces in our universities that are suitable for transdisciplinary education?

These questions were considered by a plenary panel, which I organised and chaired at the International Transdisciplinarity Conference 2017 at Leuphana University, Germany. Three major educational requirements were identified:

  • long-term collaborations with businesses, as well as non-governmental, governmental and community organisations
  • teaching particular dispositions and competencies
  • preparing students for intercultural endeavours.

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Transkillery! What skills are needed to be a boundary crosser?

Community member post by Dena Fam, Tanzi Smith and Dana Cordell

Dena Fam (biography)

What skills and dispositions are required by researchers and practitioners in transdisciplinary research and practice in crossing boundaries, sectors and paradigms?

The insights here come from interviews with 14 internationally recognized transdisciplinary researchers and practitioners, chosen from a diverse range of research and practice-based perspectives.

Tanzi Smith (biography)

Here we focus on:

1) skills for specific tasks such as facilitation of a meeting, crafting a well-written report, and communicating effectively across disciplines; and,

Dana Cordell (biography)

2) dispositions, attitudes, orientations and temperaments of an effective researcher/practitioner, i.e., as a way of being.


Six categories of skills and dispositions

The core skills and dispositions of an exceptional transdisciplinary researcher/practitioner can be grouped into six categories, illustrated in the figure below. Continue reading