• Where [arts-integrated interdisciplinarity] works best...is when you have these people who are great at their first assignment and you make it easy for them to cross boundaries in their second assignment.

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On Disciplinarity, Interdisciplinarity and Transdisciplinarity

  • September 29, 2014
  • By a2ru      
Defining disciplinary collaboration requires an understanding of meaning when it comes to the language used to describe collaboration by type.


Dr. Aisling Kelliher, Associate professor of Design at Carnegie Mellon University, explains what “interdisciplinarity” and “transdisciplinarity” mean with respect to collaboration in a research university setting. For Kelliher, the difference between these two modes of collaboration is measured by the depth at which each distinct discipline negotiates understanding of the other’s discipline, and whether the collaboration is useful to the scope of a project or serves as a catalyst for co-solving an enigmatic problem. 

The research videos produced for a2ru’s YouTube channel are provided courtesy of ArtsEngine at the University of Michigan, and are the products of an ongoing research project funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.