Next Article in Journal
Risk Assessment and Examination of Economic Aspects of Precision Weed Management
Previous Article in Journal
Sustainable Urban Development and Land Use Change—A Case Study of the Yangtze River Delta in China
Sustainability 2011, 3(8), 1090-1113; doi:10.3390/su3081090

Defining Terms for Integrated (Multi-Inter-Trans-Disciplinary) Sustainability Research

1,*  and 2
1 Centre for the Study of Agriculture, Food and Environment and Department of Sociology, University of Otago, PO Box 56, Dunedin 9054, New Zealand 2 Centre for Rural Research, N-7491 Trondheim, Norway
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 19 May 2011 / Revised: 11 July 2011 / Accepted: 18 July 2011 / Published: 26 July 2011
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [367 KB, uploaded 24 February 2015]   |   Browse Figures


Our contemporary social and ecological problems, including climate change, peak oil and food security, necessitate solutions informed by multiple backgrounds that singular disciplines seem unable to provide, and possibly, are even incapable of providing. The increasing occurrence of multi-, inter- and transdisciplinary (MIT) research projects speak to the recognition of that necessity. But as the literature and our own experiences bear out, just calling a project “beyond disciplinary” or integrated does not necessarily yield the intended outcomes or make progress toward alleviating the hurdles of bridging disciplines. Here we examine the distinctions between three categories (multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary) of integrated research and offer reflections on how sustainability researchers can categorize their research to improve common understandings.
Keywords: transdisciplinary; sustainability; multidisciplinary; interdisciplinary; integrated research; research project; methods transdisciplinary; sustainability; multidisciplinary; interdisciplinary; integrated research; research project; methods
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Share & Cite This Article

Further Mendeley | CiteULike
Export to BibTeX |
MDPI and ACS Style

Stock, P.; Burton, R.J. Defining Terms for Integrated (Multi-Inter-Trans-Disciplinary) Sustainability Research. Sustainability 2011, 3, 1090-1113.

View more citation formats

Related Articles

Article Metrics

For more information on the journal, click here


Cited By

[Return to top]
Sustainability EISSN 2071-1050 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert