Multidisciplinary approaches to solve common problems

During the last seven years, I have worked in multidisciplinary teams where professionals from different fields work together to solve specific problems. With the current globalized world and with the ongoing climate change many innovations will be necessary to confront novel challenges. The future in academia should focus on multidisciplinarity to find more effective teaching and research that develop successful answers to the complex problems we will face.

Some important skills necessary when working in multidisciplinary teams include a sense of collective responsibility, respect for each other’s opinions, and consideration of everybody’s ideas in the decision-making process. That is, we need to develop team-work skills. Graduate school is the perfect opportunity to start this process.

A central aspect of why multidisciplinary teams are more successful is the diversity of the backgrounds and approaches. Team members come from different professions, which helps to create connection of different ideas, from different perspectives, that could not be done in isolation.

An important task for every professional is to respect and see as equal other fields of knowledge. Sometimes can be difficult to integrate social sciences, humanities, engineering, and the natural sciences together.

Is working in multidisciplinary teams encouraged in your field? Can you mention an example of professionals from different fields working in a project in your field?

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