Online from: 2000
Subject Area: Education
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|Title:||Facilitating transdisciplinary sustainable development research teams through online collaboration|
|Author(s):||Ann Dale, (Royal Roads University, Victoria, Canada), Lenore Newman, (School of Environment and Sustainability, Royal Roads University, Victoria, Canada), Chris Ling, (Royal Roads University, Victoria, Canada)|
|Citation:||Ann Dale, Lenore Newman, Chris Ling, (2010) "Facilitating transdisciplinary sustainable development research teams through online collaboration", International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, Vol. 11 Iss: 1, pp.36 - 48|
|Keywords:||Canada, Communication, Communication technologies, Research, Sustainable development|
|Article type:||Research paper|
|DOI:||10.1108/14676371011010039 (Permanent URL)|
|Publisher:||Emerald Group Publishing Limited|
|Acknowledgements:||The authors are indebted to the research assistance of Tim Penner, Research Assistant, and to funding from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council's RDI Program.|
Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to discuss the potential of online communication technologies to facilitate university-led transdisciplinary sustainable development research and lower the ecological footprints of such research projects. A series of case studies is to be explored.
Design/methodology/approach – A one year project is conducted in which a series of research tasks are carried out on an online communications platform. Findings are compared to other examples from the literature.
Findings – Online communication technology can be used to facilitate transdisciplinary research tasks, saving time, money and with less environmental impact than that of face-to-face meetings. However, in order for online collaboration to be successful the researchers must be very organized and have strong facilitation skills.
Research limitations/implications – The research takes place in a North American setting. Time zone issues and access to sufficient internet technology can be a barrier in global research collaboration.
Practical implications – Online communication technology can be a practical way to lower the environmental impact of the research process and lower the cost of collaborative meetings.
Originality/value – The outcomes of this research suggest online collaboration can play a much larger role in student and faculty research, including but not limited to online research analysis, data collection and field exploration.
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