Interdisciplinarity among Academic Scientists: Individual and Organizational Factors

Today when interdisciplinary research (IDR) is becoming increasingly important
in generating innovative research results and solving complex problems in academia,
discussions of IDR antecedents, processes and outcomes are becoming increasingly
important in research policy and sociology of science. This study addresses two primary
questions: 1) what individual and organizational factors affect academic scientists’
engagement in IDR, 2) what the effects of these factors are in difference disciplines.
Drawing on a wide variety of social science theories including studies of academic tenure
system, organizational climate theory, theories about women and gender in science and
scientific and technical human capital theory, it develops four hypotheses to investigate
the effects of tenure system, university climate for IDR, gender, and industry experience
on the degree to which individual scientists engage in IDR.

Author(s): Fang Xiao
Organization(s): Georgia State University
Source: Dissertation, Georgia State University
Year: 2014

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