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On Interdisciplinarity and Models of Knowledge Production

Elena Khlinovskaya Rockhill

The six UK Genetics Knowledge Parks (GKPs) were shaped and governed by two frameworks: a 'need' to harness 'new genetics' and the relations of accountability as seen in the context of entrepreneurial government. The remit of the Cambridge GKP (CGKP) was to develop public health genetics by building on the concepts of partnership and interdisciplinarity. In the course of its work, the CGKP emphasized the virtues of 'change management', seen as distinct from, and opposed to, an academic model of knowledge production. However, the model that the CGKP actually created was a research/management hybrid that resisted quality assurance checks developed for each model (research and management), presenting a formidable challenge for the evaluation and assessment of the CGKP's work.

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Interdisciplinary Concepts and their Political Significance

Ernst Müller

This essay introduces a panel of four studies of concepts: survival, generation, mutation, and reflex; concepts which circulate among different disciplines. The introduction addresses the problems of disciplinary lexica of conceptual history which have been completed in Germany in recent years; at the same time it questions the boundaries between political-social language (as represented by the Cambridge school in the English-speaking world and by Koselleck in the German) and concepts in natural sciences. The methodological problems examined in the process include issues of knowledge and discipline and interdisciplinarity, as well as of metaphorology and translation, and investigates their relation to the logic of the political.

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Mobility as homelessness

The uprooted lives of early career researchers

Corina Balaban

This article discusses three kinds of mobility among early stage researchers: geographical mobility, mobility between disciplines – or interdisciplinarity – and cross-sectoral mobility. It focuses on how PhD fellows engage with and negotiate experiences of mobility. These types of mobility have largely been presented as inherently beneficial in mainstream policy discourse, but this article presents a more nuanced picture of mobility, showing the challenges of mobility, as experienced and articulated by PhD fellows and some of their supervisors. The research is based on twenty-six interviews with PhD fellows and principal investigators involved in two types of flagship doctoral programmes: the ITN in Europe, and the IGERT in the United States. The main finding is that PhD fellows associated all three types of mobility with feelings of homelessness.

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Problems Don't Care about Disciplinary Boundaries

Regina F. Bendix

and also personal passions ( Bendix 2008 ). The heat of disciplinary specialisation can also burn up or scald what flexibility inquiring minds may have for interdisciplinary engagement – and yet interdisciplinarity is not just a slogan term among

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An epistemological awakening

Michel de Certeau and the writing of culture

Ben Highmore

The historian and theorist Michel de Certeau offers a challenge and a promise to all those involved in the practice of ‘writing culture’. Part of the promise that his work contains is for a true interdisciplinarity that is fashioned out of a much more integrated approach to culture; but it is also a promise that suggests an approach to culture that is much more responsive to the particularity and peculiarity of culture (an ‘interdiscipline’ that would refashion itself in its response to its object). The challenge that de Certeau offers is one fundamental to anyone writing culture now: how to write of reality, truth, actuality, in the face of the massive epistemological scepticism generated by poststructuralism.

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Discipline and Publish?

Transfers as Interdisciplinary Site

Cotten Seiler

of disciplinary vocabularies in formulating the questions that most needed asking. Looking back on ten years of Transfers , it strikes me that the journal is on its way to fulfilling its interdisciplinarity promise. This is not to say the essays

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Academic staff as ‘transition managers’ in interdisciplinary, international MA education

A Danish case study

Hanne Tange

disciplines. Drawing on the concept of ‘troublesome knowledge’ ( Meyer and Land 2005 ), Ray Land describes interdisciplinarity as a challenge, which moves scholars from their mono-disciplinary comfort zone into uncertain spaces requesting ‘deep’ learning in

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The Past as a Foreign Country

Bioarchaeological Perspectives on Pinker’s “Prehistoric Anarchy”

Linda Fibiger

borrowing from, appropriating, and ultimately “colonizing” related disciplines, or indeed the distant past, should avoid postcolonial attitudes. Like the attempt to understand the meaning and motivations behind past human actions, true interdisciplinarity

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Facts and Norms in Democratization

Roberto Farneti

integrate the ways and mores that structure empirical research. Democracy and Interdisciplinarity Group psychology, for one thing, offers interesting inputs into the effects of polarization, albeit on a different scale. But the case of group psychology shows

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Limits, Genealogies, and Openings

Introductory Remarks on Engaging Religion

Andreas Bandak and Simon Stjernholm

this collection, to show the importance of interdisciplinarity when thinking about the means, ends, methods, and results of academic analyses that in one way or another deal with religions and religiosity. The conversation partners are here placed