Research>Global Academies>Facilitating Interdisciplinarity

Global Academies’ 3rd Annual Interdisciplinary Workshop, May 2022

GA Workshop Image 1.jpgGA Workshop Image 2.jpg

Over two mornings on the 3rd and 4th of May, the GA team held our third annual interdisciplinary workshop. The last two years have taught us that flexibility is at the heart of our new approach to working life. Thus, this year’s workshop was hybrid in its approach, enabling academics from across all schools to attend both in person and virtually. The flexibility of hybrid attendance meant the GA team could include more academics, resulting in an increase in workshop numbers and diverse expertise in each group. Participants really embraced the hybrid approach, Gemma Mitchell, Lecturer in Teacher Education & Professional Learning, stated:

“What a feat of ingenuity it was to hold this year’s event in a hybrid fashion! I had an ‘almost conflicting’ online meeting planned for 1pm on the first day of the workshops, as well as childcare commitments. Yet, due to the hybrid nature of the workshops, and excellent facilitation of the RIS team, I was able to attend in the morning to network with new colleagues, return home during the break and re-join and participate for the second half of the day. This meant that I could join my external online meeting at 1pm without a detrimental effect to my contribution to the GA group.”

Teams were split into groups of up to eight and worked to resolve a global challenge (including topics such as creating a blueprint for burnout among educators, sustainable development and tourism, and tackling poverty among refugees in Wales, all aligned to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and/or Well-being of Future Generations Act [2015]. Each team used a virtual whiteboard to map out opportunities, obstacles, and barriers in addressing their global challenge. Colleagues benefitted from engagement with academics from multiple schools and disciplinary training— allowing a fully interdisciplinary approach to their challenge.

Dr Carolyn Hayles led a challenge seeking to integrate climate change into decision-making. Carolyn felt the workshop was of great benefit, she stated:

“The GA workshop provided an opportunity to meet colleagues from other schools and start to develop a project proposal that we might otherwise not have collaborated on.  As a team we explored how we might better communicate climate change risks and vulnerabilities, appropriate mitigation and adaptation, to support homeowners and the wider housing sector.   The project idea, to develop to physical and virtual space to support knowledge, skills and training, has since been pitched to collaborators at the National Museum Wales, and they are keen to work with us to further develop the idea and a funding bid. “ 

The GA team holds these interdisciplinary workshops annually, with the aim of fostering interdisciplinarity in research across the University and building a thriving research culture at Cardiff Met. We invite academics interested in collaborating on interdisciplinary projects and growing their research and innovation networks.