Interdisciplinarity and innovation dynamics. On convergence of research, technology, economy, and society

Poiesis and Praxis 7 (4):275-289 (2011)
Abstract
In the age of globalization, economic growth and the welfare of nations decisively depend on basic innovations. Therefore, education and knowledge is an important advantage of competition in highly developed countries with high standards of salaries, but raw material shortage. In the twenty-first century, innovations will arise from problem-oriented research, crossing over traditional faculties and disciplines. Therefore, we need platforms of interdisciplinary dialogue to choose transdisciplinary problems (e.g., environment, energy, information, health, welfare) and to cluster new portfolios of technologies. The clusters of research during the excellence initiative at German universities are examples of converging sciences. The integration of natural and engineering sciences as well as medicine can only be realized if the research training programs (e.g., graduate schools) generate a considerable added value in terms of multidisciplinary experience, international networking, scientific and entrepreneurial know-how, and personality development. The Carl von Linde-Academy is presented as an example of an interdisciplinary center of research and teaching at the Technical University of Munich
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