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Eleonora Barbieri Masini Professor of Future Studies Faculty of Social Sciences Pontiticia Universita Gregoriana Rome, Italy

Some considerations on Transdisciplinarity

In a world of increasingly rapid and interrelated change, it is obvious that it is not possible to look at social problems or issues from one point of view or perspective.

The complexity of problems is such that it is necessary to address issues using a variety of different disciplinary approaches. Hence, the need for cooperation among

disciplines, hence the need for interdisciplinarity

as a principle (if not a practice),

hence

the

importance

of

multiculturality

(.

.).

Looking ahead needs not only many discipline

s looking at problems, but also a

coordination

of

disciplines.

It

was

on

this

basis

that

transdisciplinarity

emerged.

The difference between an interdisciplinary and a transdisciplinary approach is as in the to a follows : in the former, l a t t e r , d i s c i p l i n e s o f f e disciplines offer a parallel analysis their .specific approaches and even of problems (...) ; basic assumptions r dialogue, , case of in order address complex issues together. In the to

transdisciplinarity, something which

is

approaches and even methods are indeed difficult in complex societies,

developed in a joint but very necessary (.

effort, .).

For

some

authors,

the

concept

of

transdisciplinarity

is

enriched

by

multidimensionality. between disciplines, thought and cultures

Yehezekel Dror believes that (...) not only there is a relationship but also a contribution from different backgrounds, schools of (.. .).

Multidimensionality

and transdisciplinarity

are the opposite of specialization, one of

the characteristics of the industrial age, which is in itself part of the search for greater and greater detail in natural and social sciences (...),

Thus transdisciplinarity

can be

reasons and to

address a rapidly

said to be crucial changing society.

at this point in time for Without transdisciplinarity

historical we risk

making mistakes of such gravity as to threaten age of specialization, unless transdisciplinarity understanding a complex and rapidly changing in the making (. .).

the very survival of humanity. In the is understood as an important tool for society, dangers are ahead or already

Experiences

with

Transdisciplinarity

  • -

    Successes

For almost a decade in the framework of the United Nations University I developed comparative research on the effects of macro-events on the unit family and on women in eight developing countries (.,.). The whole of the first year of the research was devoted to identifying a transdisciplinary approach suited to such a vast multicultural project.

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