198 Early-Career Professional Development Training for Stakeholder-Relevant, Interdisciplinary Research

Monday, 23 January 2017
4E (Washington State Convention Center )
Derek H. Rosendahl, South Central Climate Science Center, Norman, OK; and A. Bamzai, R. McPherson, and J. zak

There are many challenges to conducting inter- or multi-disciplinary research because basic research, applied research, management processes, disciplines, and even sub-disciplines have been “siloed” for so long that many research and management professionals find it difficult to communicate common interests and research needs. It is clear that the next generation of researchers must overcome these disciplinary biases and engage in more open dialogue with other disciplines and the management community in order to be better positioned to collaborate, speak a common language, and understand each other’s needs.

The U.S. Department of the Interior’s South Central Climate Science Center recently conducted a professional development training for 23 early-career researchers involved in climate-related research across the south-central U.S. The participants consisted of graduate students, postdocs, and environmental professionals representing 17 different natural and social science disciplines and nine Universities/Institutions. The workshop provided the participants with guidance and instruction on how to overcome the identified challenges in conducting “actionable” research and how to better navigate multi-institutional and multi- or inter-disciplinary research.

The workshop was comprised of: (1) a series of instructional presentations organized into themed sessions; (2) two keynote addresses to provide a broader perspective; (3) a real-world case study activity; (4) individual and group projects/presentations; and (5) field trips. In addition, we purposely created informal opportunities for participants to network, which met the goal of facilitating interdisciplinary interactions. An overview of the workshop experience will be provided, including a focus on those aspects leading to its ultimate success and recommendations for how to develop and implement a similar early-career training for your own purposes.

- Indicates paper has been withdrawn from meeting
- Indicates an Award Winner