Monthly Archives: July 2016

Some notes from the history of interdisciplinarity

Frank 1988 p 146

From Frank, 1988, p. 146

It is not difficult to notice that epistemic fluency has its roots in interdisciplinarity. But what are the roots of interdisciplinarity? Some historical writings trace the origins of interdisciplinarity back to the mid-1920s (Frank, 1988; Sills, 1986; Graff, 2015). These exquisitely written historical texts nicely show that interdisciplinarity has been one of most ambitious and challenging intellectual projects for more than nine decades. During this time, interdisciplinary has celebrated some great achievements, but equally often it has also struggled to fulfil its promises.

Yes, during last few years, interdisciplinarity (again) has become a hot topic and (again) made its way into research funding schemes and university’s curriculums. But let’s not forget that it has been trying to do so for 90 years. What astonishes is that we know so little about how people learn to do this complex work.

Below are some insights that worth knowing and/or not forgetting.

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