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Strengthening Interdisciplinarity: Initial ideas for Livestock CRP Integrated Core Project


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Presented by Mona Dhamankar at the Livestock CRP Priority Countries Planning Meeting, Nairobi, 26–27 March 2019

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Strengthening Interdisciplinarity: Initial ideas for Livestock CRP Integrated Core Project

  1. 1. Strengthening Interdisciplinarity: Initial ideas for Livestock CRP Integrated Core Project Mona Dhamankar 1 Livestock CRP Priority Countries Planning Meeting 26 – 27 March 2019 Nairobi, Kenya
  2. 2. Why interdisciplinarity ? “We are not students of some subject matter, but students of problems. And problems may cut right across the borders of any subject matter or discipline.” (Karl Popper) • AR4D/LR4D programs intervene in complex socio-ecological systems, • Donor insistence that AR4D/LR4D programs achieve quantifiable and ambitious development outcomes and impact 2
  3. 3. Why interdisciplinarity ? • To solve a large and complex problems, or exploit a promising new opportunity. • Also about internal partnerships and interactions and the processes involved 3
  4. 4. Interdisciplinarity…..ways of working together • Groups making decisions - working together on a common problem • Taking action for the collective good - local, national, or international scale. • Spaces to learn together in an interactive way, • Finding ways forward that are more likely to be in the interests of all. • Short consultation processes or multi-year engagements • Structured, formal organizational arrangements, or • Semi-structured processes - over a shorter or longer time • Different individuals and groups relate and engage with each other in different ways. Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  5. 5. Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  6. 6. Agriculture as complex socio-ecological systems Complex systems:  Complex behaviour because of nonlinear causal processes (in ecological and social system)  Change can emerge from small actions, through nonlinear processes, feedback loops, dynamic interactions and tipping points  The cause-effect relations need to be monitored as the change reveals itself in the course of action (cannot be fully understood ex-ante) 6 Source: Rivera-Ferre et al. 2013
  7. 7. Amsterdam, The Netherlands Adapted from Klerkx et al. (2012) Linear approach to LR4D Complexity-aware approach to LR4D Name Technology transfer Agricultural Innovation Systems Mental model and activities Supply knowledge and technology to the next user Co-develop innovation involving multi-actor processes and partnerships Disciplines Single discipline driven Interdisciplinary, holistic systems perspective, stakeholder engagement Drivers Supply-push from research Responsiveness to changing contexts Source of innovation Scientists Multiple stakeholder processes (internal and external) Role of farmers Passive adopters or laggards As partners, entrepreneurs and innovators exerting demands Role of scientists Innovators who hold knowledge As partners, one of the many groups responding to demands Changes sought Benefits accruing from technology adoption System change, increase in systems’ capacity to innovate Adapted from Klerkx et al. (2012)
  8. 8. Bringing in an agri-business perspective in our work Amsterdam, The Netherlands Adapted from Human Centred Design. Source:KIT,
  9. 9. Beyond interdisciplinarity … Amsterdam, The Netherlands In summary: • Integrating methods from different disciplines • Includes non-academic actors • Integrates non-scientific forms of knowledge Some questions: • Do we have a shared mission? • Are we “T” shaped researchers? • Do we have institutional support? • How do we nurture constructive dialogue?