Department Environmental Social Sciences

Strengthening inter- and transdisciplinary integration (INTEGRATE)

Coordinated research management is crucial for the success of inter- and transdisciplinary research programs - such as Wings. A laissez-faire type of management, which hopes that the different parts of such programs grow together organically has not proven successful. Rather, the different parts have the tendency to diverge, making inter- and transdisciplinary integration at a later stage more difficult. The proposed project aims at enabling the realization of the program’s inter- and transdisciplinary ambitions by (1) fostering strategic collaborations across Eawag and beyond, (2) leading inter- and transdisciplinary integration – connotating a process of creating a coherent and comprehensive whole of the different parts being brought together – within and across the program, (3) producing a first scientific synthesis towards the end of Wings Phase II, and (4) enabling open, reflexive and continuous discussions among the Wings team on inter- and transdisciplinary collaboration and integration in both theory and (daily) practice. The proposed project will build on and further develop the collaborative structures set up in Wings Phase I to effectively advance collaboration, integration and synthesis as work progresses. The project will strengthen Eawag’s capacity for inter- and transdisciplinary research, by fostering a long-term learning process among team members on ‘how to do’ inter- and transdisciplinary collaboration and integration and ‘how to do it differently’ in case forms of collaboration and/or means of integration prove to be little effective to exploit the programs’ full inter- and transdisciplinary potentials. Finally, it will allow for realigning, if necessary, inter- and transdisciplinary collaboration and/or integration and for drawing lessons learnt for future strategic research programs.


Deutsch, L.; Belcher, B.; Claus, R.; Hoffmann, S. (2021) Leading inter- and transdisciplinary research: lessons from applying theories of change to a strategic research program, Environmental Science and Policy, 120, 29-41, doi:10.1016/j.envsci.2021.02.009, Institutional Repository
Pohl, C.; Fam, D.; Hoffmann, S.; Mitchell, C. (2019) Exploring Julie Thompson Klein's framework for analysis of boundary work, Issues in Interdisciplinary Studies, 37(2), 62-89, Institutional Repository
Hoffmann, S.; Thompson Klein, J.; Pohl, C. (2019) Linking transdisciplinary research projects with science and practice at large: introducing insights from knowledge utilization, Environmental Science and Policy, 102, 36-42, doi:10.1016/j.envsci.2019.08.011, Institutional Repository
Hitziger, M.; Aragrande, M.; Berezowski, J. A.; Canali, M.; Del Rio Vilas, V.; Hoffmann, S.; Igrejas, G.; Keune, H.; Lux, A.; Bruce, M.; Palenberg, M. A.; Pohl, C.; Radeski, M.; Richter, I.; Robledo Abad, C.; Salerno, R. H.; Savic, S.; Schirmer, J.; Vogler, B. R.; Rüegg, S. R. (2019) EVOLvINC: evaluating knowledge integration capacity in multistakeholder governance, Ecology and Society, 24(2), 36 (16 pp.), doi:10.5751/ES-10935-240236, Institutional Repository
Maag, S.; Alexander, T. J.; Kase, R.; Hoffmann, S. (2018) Indicators for measuring the contributions of individual knowledge brokers, Environmental Science and Policy, 89, 1-9, doi:10.1016/j.envsci.2018.06.002, Institutional Repository