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Research in and about interdisciplinary fields – new needs for organizing, practicing and evaluating science?! 
Silvio Suckow (Weizenbaum Institute)
Josephine Schmitt (Center for Advanced Internet Studies (CAIS))
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Traditional Open Panel

Short Abstract:

Most of the scientific system is still based on disciplinary norms, but societal complexity demands interdisciplinary research practices. This panel seeks to explore whether and how interdisciplinary research can be organized, practiced, and evaluated in the current system.

Long Abstract:

Traditionally, scientific practices, organizations, and evaluations are shaped around disciplinary expectations. However, the complexity and dynamic of societal questions increasingly require multi-perspective inter- and transdisciplinary research approaches (British Academy 2016). The emerging fields research on digital transformation (Schmitt et al. 2023), public health or gender studies are only examples of a large diversity of interdisciplinary fields which have developed within the last years. Despite these new epistemic fields and much theoretical work (Biancani et al. 2018; Klein 2010; Nowotny et al. 2001), the organization of research, research funding, publication and career paths are still strongly influenced by the traditional and disparate structures of the science system. However, with the emergence and establishment of more and more new interdisciplinary fields, the question arises whether and how interdisciplinary research can be organized, practiced, and evaluated in the current system. Moreover, the question remains open to what extent these developments also lead to profound and sustainable transformations in science.

Against this background, we ask in this panel: How do expectation and competence frames shift in interdisciplinary fields? How is it possible to balance (as a person, organization, system) between disciplinary and interdisciplinary interests? How can interdisciplinary teams work successfully in the current science system? What new modes of organization and evaluation regimes are needed in interdisciplinary research contexts? What roles do digital methods, tools, and digitally networked ways of thinking play in the development and stabilization of interdisciplinary fields? How do current empirical developments fit with concepts from the literature?

We want to discuss these and further related questions in the panel. With a focus on empirically based (qualitative, quantitative, or mixed method) insights, concepts, and theoretical developments, we would like to encourage learning from each other regarding the analysis and design of various interdisciplinary fields.

Accepted papers:

Session 1