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Reflexive Interdisciplinary Research: The Making of a Research Programme on the Rural Economy and Land Use

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  • Philip Lowe
  • Jeremy Phillipson

Abstract

This paper provides an account of the origins and formation of the UK Research Councils' Rural Economy and Land Use (RELU) programme and its approach to promoting interdisciplinary working between social and natural scientists. The programme is set in the context of broader developments in science policy, including a policy discourse centred upon sustainable development and the knowledge economy and associated demands for greater accountability in science. Interdisciplinarity promises research that will be more relevant and responsive to public needs and concerns. In describing the provenance of the RELU programme, therefore, the paper seeks to lay out the different stages in its initiation and design to show how, to varying degrees, these were open to external scrutiny and influence. The process of developing the programme illustrates that it is not straightforward to make research agendas and funding more transparent and accountable. It also provides insights into the challenges that interdisciplinarity and accountability present to established science institutions. Copyright 2006 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Philip Lowe & Jeremy Phillipson, 2006. "Reflexive Interdisciplinary Research: The Making of a Research Programme on the Rural Economy and Land Use," Journal of Agricultural Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(2), pages 165-184, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jageco:v:57:y:2006:i:2:p:165-184
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    Cited by:

    1. C. Hinrichs, 2008. "Interdisciplinarity and boundary work: challenges and opportunities for agrifood studies," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 25(2), pages 209-213, June.
    2. Hamade, Kanj & Malorgio, Giulio & Midmore, Peter, 2011. "Combining Quantitative And Qualitative Approaches To Rural Development Analysis: The Case Of Agricultural Intensification In Lebanon," 85th Annual Conference, April 18-20, 2011, Warwick University, Coventry, UK 108960, Agricultural Economics Society.
    3. Rafols, Ismael & Leydesdorff, Loet & O’Hare, Alice & Nightingale, Paul & Stirling, Andy, 2012. "How journal rankings can suppress interdisciplinary research: A comparison between Innovation Studies and Business & Management," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(7), pages 1262-1282.
    4. Kragt, M.E. & Pannell, D.J. & McVittie, A. & Stott, A.W. & Vosough Ahmadi, B. & Wilson, P., 2016. "Improving interdisciplinary collaboration in bio-economic modelling for agricultural systems," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 143(C), pages 217-224.

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