Developing ‘Nexus Capabilities’: towards transdisciplinary methodologies

Working Paper

As invited by the ESRC to inform their Training and Skills Committee and doctoral training programme, the central aim of the Nexus Network is to inform development of enhanced methodologies for improving cross-disciplinary research on the global food, water and energy nexus.

Identification, exploration and specification of the associated capabilities are especially salient in provision for doctoral training. But the implications are also important for wider cross Research Council collaborative research – and, indeed, provision for policy-relevant analysis more generally.

To this end, this present paper reports initial findings arising in considering more than a hundred different methods variously considered to be relevant to research and appraisal of nexus-related challenges. The methods surveyed encompass a diversity of disciplinary approaches, spanning many different natural and social sciences (including economics), and extending across engineering, medicine and many other professions, as well as humanities and the performing arts.

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