LIAS Interdisciplinary Alphabet
Leicester Institute for Advanced Studies Interdisciplinary Alphabet of academic terms with multiple meanings and uses.
The project was funded by LIAS in 2023. The alphabet is a collection of words and terms that illustrate two elements of interdisciplinary research. Some of the words are demonstrative of the multiplicity of definitions that can, in some cases, lead to misunderstandings when working in an interdisciplinary team. Other words are commonly used in relation to interdisciplinary work, and so are useful to have in mind when considering a project idea. It is not an exhaustive list, and nor are the definitions either complete or definitive. Each entry in this alphabet is headed by the Oxford English Dictionary definitions and, when relevant, descriptions from research bodies like REF and UKRI. Below this is either a short description of how the term relates to interdisciplinary research, or a list of discipline-specific definitions, with the disciplinary area highlighted in italics. In cases where the OED definition covers disciplinary uses of the word, this is not always expanded upon; in general the alphabet is a guide to words that have uses beyond the most commonly used meanings.
The purpose of this alphabet is to provide a starting point, either for individual consideration or group discussion, for conversations about terms being used and their meanings within a project.
Research Associate: Dr Anna Harrington