Visualising the interdisciplinary research field

the life cycle of economic history in Australia

Claire Wright, Simon Ville

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)


Interdisciplinary research is frequently viewed as an important component of the research landscape through its innovative ability to integrate knowledge from different areas. However, support for interdisciplinary research is often strategic rhetoric, with policy-makers and universities frequently adopting practices that favour disciplinary performance. We argue that disciplinary and interdisciplinary research are complementary, and we develop a simple framework that demonstrates this for a semi-permanent interdisciplinary research field. We argue that the presence of communicating infrastructures fosters communication and integration between disciplines and the interdisciplinary research field to generate innovative knowledge. We apply this to the experience of economic history in Australia in the second half of the twentieth century to demonstrate the life cycle of a semi-permanent interdisciplinary research field.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)321-340
Number of pages20
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Interdisciplinary research
  • Disciplinary research
  • Economic history
  • Innovation
  • Communicating infrastructures
  • Research management

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