Disciplines help to organise knowledge for quality assessment purposes and are the cornerstone of academic peer review and recognition. How do we judge what “good” research is if it is outside of our immediate sphere of expertise?
Comprehensive reviews of good practice in inter-and transdisciplinary evaluation are given in Christian Pohl and co-authors’ 2011 article Questions to evaluate inter- and transdisciplinary research proposals.
And in Catherine Lyall and Emma King’s report on international good practice in interdisciplinary peer review.
A similar review is provided with Veronica Strang and Tom McLeish’s overview from the perspective of an Institute of Advanced Study.
Shorter summaries are provided in this guide on reviewing interdisciplinary research proposals.
And this guide to evaluating interdisciplinary research.
In this 5 min video clip, Emily Woollen and Catherine Lyall from the University of Edinburgh discuss the evaluation of interdisciplinary research and how it might be improved.
The Belmont Foundation offers resources on evaluating transdisciplinary approaches and developing research metrics for transdisciplinary research including approaches and indicators for evaluation (see pages 9–10).
Further advice on evaluation and recommendations for funders designing review processes are provided in this briefing note.
The theme of appropriate research metrics for interdisciplinarity is also explored in this i2Insights blog.
SHAPE-ID partners Christian Pohl and Isabel Fletcher provide their Top Ten Tips for evaluating inter- and transdisciplinary research.
There is general agreement that interdisciplinary proposals will require a higher number of reviewers. The selection of evaluators and the design of review processes is addressed in Catherine Lyall and Emma King’s 2013 report on the topic.
This Open Access chapter deals with evaluating interdisciplinary proposals, programmes and publications and provides several Key Advice summaries such as Key Advice 7.3 Tips for effective interdisciplinary review panels.
In addition to the good practice guidelines (see Find out about good practice in ID/TD evaluation), several commentators have suggested sets of questions that reviewers might adopt to probe quality indicators. For further details and full citations see Lyall and King (2013).
This SHAPE-ID Reflective Tool for evaluators of inter- and transdisciplinary research proposals will guide reviewers in assessing the feasibility and quality of research proposals. It provides guidance on whether the proposed research demands an inter- or transdisciplinary approach and is truly integrative in nature. This means, for example, searching for evidence of a joint research question, joint theory formation and shared methods, data and materials.
SHAPE-ID has produced this guide reflecting on the need for new methods of evaluating inter- and transdisciplinary research, with a list of further resources.