Team science is increasingly prevalent as the scope of scientific questions broadens and requires synthesis of several disciplines. At Fellowship Program workshops, fellows receive training in topics including team science, inter-disciplinary collaboration best practices, and conflict resolution. The collaborative skills and techniques are practiced by fellows during face-to-face and remote research collaborations.
During the 2013 GLEON Fellows Workshop, the Fellows participated in a Toolbox workshop, designed to enhance communication and collaboration in interdisciplinary research through dialogue about scientific worldviews. The 3.5-hour workshop began with an introductory lecture on the general approach to interdisciplinary communication by the Toolbox Project facilitators, Drs. Stephen Crowley (Boise State University) and Michael O’Rourke (Michigan State University), followed by a lengthy dialogue among the 12 Fellows. The dialogue addressed questions such as whether scientific research requires hypotheses, whether replication is required to validate scientific findings, and whether value-neutral scientific research is possible. While the group of Fellows did not have wide-ranging experience in interdisciplinary research, they demonstrated interest in the conceptual dimensions of science that were the focus of the workshop, and successfully shared an interesting range of views about those dimensions. (For more on the Toolbox Project and its approach, see http://www.cals.uidaho.edu/toolbox.)