By Varvara Nikulina, Johan Larson Lindal, Henrikke Baumann, David Simon, and Henrik Ny
How can facilitators take into account diversity stemming from epistemic communities, linguistic variety and culture when leading workshops aimed at co-production in transdisciplinary research?
Although facilitators are skilled in mitigating conflicting interests and ideas among participants, they are often poorly prepared for dealing with these other types of diversity.
We have developed a framework that allows diversity in epistemic standpoint, linguistic diversity and culture to be mapped in a workshop setting. This is illustrated in the figure below and each box in the framework is described next.
Epistemic communities or thought collectives are groups with shared and agreed forms of knowledge, thought styles or rationalities, and world views. These often differ from or even conflict with those of other groups. For example, engineers, social scientists, public servants and entrepreneurs are four different epistemic communities.