Inter- and transdisciplinary challenges in practice

Venue: Metochi Study Centre on Lesvos.
(For information about the venue, see: )
Time: 30.07.2023 – 06.08.2023.
Organizer: Matthias Kaiser
Co-lead: Silvio Funtowicz and Bruna De Marchi 🍀
Application deadline: Thursday, 27. April 2023.

WP8 of the AFINO-hub has a focus on transdisciplinarity in research and held a workshop on the topic in 2022. It confirmed that several transdisciplinary projects are already pursued with different topics and design.
This year we will plan to follow up on this theme and focus on practical challenges when designing an inter- or transdisciplinary research project. One of the biggest challenges is quality assessment of such projects and how this would reflect on the merits of the researchers involved. Another challenge is – obviously – the limits of the current funding system in terms of time and funds.
Ethical issues – related to a commitment to RRI – arise at various stages of such projects and are hard to predefine at the time of proposal writing. How is one to put RRI into practice then?

The idyllic backyard at Metochi Study Centre captured by organizer Matthias Kaiser.

The International Science Council is among the most prestigious international bodies currently advancing transdisciplinary research as a way forward for science to fulfill its sociopolitical ambitions as for instance expressed in the SDGs. The OECD has already earlier flagged such research design as the answer to the grand societal challenges. But all recognize that problems remain when it comes to translating these ideas to actual practice. The ideas of post-normal science as developed by Funtowicz and Ravetz are very much in the background for this.

Who can join?
The workshop is first of all designed for PhD students, Postdocs and researchers from Norwegian research institutions, not only from the projects affiliated to AFINO. In exceptional cases other participants may be granted participation upon application to the organizer. The number of participants will be limited to 20. In general, places will be distributed on a first-come-first-serve basis.

All participants are expected to present an extended abstract and talk about their own work. A course certificate can be obtained, indicating 3 credit points.

Costs of participation
The participants are expected to cover their own travel costs, while accommodation at Metochi will be covered by AFINO. Those accepted participants who do not have access to sufficient own / institutional travel funds can apply for AFINO funding, and the organizers will do their best to find additional travel funds for them. All accepted participants not currently working at a Norwegian research institution are expected to cover their own travel and accommodation.

Please send a preliminary application with personal details to the organizer (  by 27. April 2023.

Preliminary schedule Sunday 30.07.2023 – Sunday 06.08.2023:

Day 0: SundayTimeDay 1: MondayDay 2: TuesdayDay 3: WednesdayDay 4:
Day 5: FridayDay 6: SaturdayDay 7:
 09.00 – 09.45About the course. Matthias KaiserSpeaker:
Systems of
Matthias: On models in science for policyPresentation Participant #15All:
Departure Day
 09:45 – 10.15Introduction and
participants’ round
DiscussionDiscussionDiscussionDiscussionReflectionsTravel to
 10.15 – 11.00Presentation
Matthias Kaiser:
Ideas about TD
Participant #4
Participant #8
Presentation Participant #11Presentation Participant #16Reflections 
 11.00 – 11.30DiscussionDiscussionDiscussionDiscussionDiscussionReflections 
 11.30 – 11.45Coffee breakCoffee breakCoffee breakCoffee breakCoffee breakCoffee break 
 11.45 – 12.30Presentation Participant #1Presentation
Participant #5

Presentation Participant #9Presentation Participant #12Presentation Participant #17Discussion &
 12.30 – 13.00DiscussionDiscussion DiscussionDiscussionDiscussionContinued 
 13.00 – 14.00LunchLunchLunchLunchLunchLunch 
 14.00 – 14.45Presentation
Participant #2
Participant #6
Participant #10
Presentation Participant #13Participants
Free time 
Travel to Metochi14.45 – 15.15DiscussionDiscussionDiscussion  DiscussionParticipants
Free time 
 15.15 – 15.45Coffee breakCoffee breakCoffee breakCoffee breakCoffee breakFree time 
 15.45 – 16.30Presentation
Participant #3
Participant #7
 Free timePresentation Participant #14Participants
Free time 
 16.30 – 17.00DiscussionDiscussionFree timeDiscussionFree timeFree time 
 17.00 – 18.00Movie time:
“Aristotle’s Lagoon”
The System thinker’s
Free timeFree timeFree timeFree time 
 18.00 – 19.00Free timeFree timeFree timeFree timeFree timeFree time 
Dinner19.00 – 20.00DinnerDinnerDinnerDinnerDinnerDinner 
Matthias Kaiser
Matthias Kaiser is leader of AFINO's research group Quality and foresight in responsible research and innovationRead more about Matthias on AFINO's webpage.