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Is Interdisciplinary Collaboration in Academia an Elusive Dream?: Can the Institutional Barriers Be Broken Down? A Review of the Literature and the Case of Library Science

Is Interdisciplinary Collaboration in Academia an Elusive Dream?: Can the Institutional Barriers Be Broken Down? A Review of the Literature and the Case of Library Science
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Author(s): Linda L. Lillard (Clarion University, USA)
Copyright: 2018
Pages: 9
Source title: Promoting Interdisciplinarity in Knowledge Generation and Problem Solving
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Mohammed Nasser Al-Suqri (Sultan Qaboos University, Oman), Abdullah Khamis Al-Kindi (Sultan Qaboos University, Oman), Salim Said AlKindi (Sultan Qaboos University, Oman) and Naifa Eid Saleem (Sultan Qaboos University, Oman)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-3878-3.ch010

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Abstract

A description of how interdisciplinary collaboration can take place is presented to frame this chapter on the risks and barriers to interdisciplinary collaboration. Beginning with a working definition of interdisciplinary collaboration, defined as jointly co-authoring a paper, academic project, or grant with somebody from another discipline or jointly creating a program that contains courses from the joint collaborators' disciplines, this chapter reviews recommendations for creating and supporting successful interdisciplinary collaborations. Included are ten simple rules for successful cross-disciplinary collaborations put together by a group of researchers in the sciences, who more often participate in interdisciplinary collaborations than do their counterparts in the humanities and social sciences. The chapter closes with the case of issues with interdisciplinary collaboration in library and information science, an area that is truly interdisciplinary, yet often becomes the object of turf battles with other academic areas. This case provides a true-life look at just how attempts at interdisciplinary collaboration that should work, can easily backfire.

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