The first in our series of Teatime Talks. Tea and cakes are on the house.
According to Wikipedia, what sets transdisciplinary studies apart is an emphasis on real-world engagement, investigation, and participation in addressing issues and problems in a manner that explicitly destabilizes disciplinary boundaries while respecting disciplinary expertise. Tim Ingold (2012) has questioned whether it is even meaningful to talk of boundaries. Instead he rejects spatialising metaphors: “scholars do not inhabit fields but follow paths. They are, if you will, like walkers rather than cows”. He suggests that a discipline is not so much a bounded field as a tangle of pathways that happen, at least for a certain period of time, to have converged.
My work with the Connected Communities programme (an RCUK initiative led by the AHRC) has involved running a range of research workshops with selected members of the public. I use the lens of transdisciplinarity and the idea of a tangle of pathways to begin to explore the methodology of making intervention to learn about practice. And I actively seek audience feedback to help understand the processes I have been using.
Ann Light is a professor of design at Northumbria University, after a career that has spanned drama, journalism, human-computer interaction and a range of qualitative research methodologies, in an eclectic journey towards understanding the diversity of human relations and how they are mediated.
In the Transdisciplinary Common Room (TDC), Fletcher Quad