Facilitating Transdisciplinary Sustainable Development Research Teams through Online Collaboration
IJSHE Volume 11, Number 1, ISSN 1467-6370
Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to discuss the potential of online communication technologies to facilitate university-led transdisciplinary sustainable development research and lower the ecological footprints of such research projects. A series of case studies is to be explored. Design/methodology/approach: A one year project is conducted in which a series of research tasks are carried out on an online communications platform. Findings are compared to other examples from the literature. Findings: Online communication technology can be used to facilitate transdisciplinary research tasks, saving time, money and with less environmental impact than that of face-to-face meetings. However, in order for online collaboration to be successful the researchers must be very organized and have strong facilitation skills. Research limitations/implications: The research takes place in a North American setting. Time zone issues and access to sufficient internet technology can be a barrier in global research collaboration. Practical implications: Online communication technology can be a practical way to lower the environmental impact of the research process and lower the cost of collaborative meetings. Originality/value: The outcomes of this research suggest online collaboration can play a much larger role in student and faculty research, including but not limited to online research analysis, data collection and field exploration. (Contains 1 table and 3 figures.)
Dale, A., Newman, L. & Ling, C. (2010). Facilitating Transdisciplinary Sustainable Development Research Teams through Online Collaboration. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, 11(1), 36-48.