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Neuroendocrinology Letters Vol. 22 No. 4 Contents
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Neuroendocrinology Letters incl. Psychoneuroimmunology & Chronobiology

NeuroendocrinologyİLetters incl. Psychoneuroimmunology and Chronobiology, Editorial.
ISSNİ0172ñ780X Copyrightİ©İ2001 NeuroendocrinologyİLetters

NEL VOL. 22 No. 4
Guest Editorial

Full text pdf (90kb)

2001; 22:219-221
pii: NEL220401E03
PMID: 11524626


"Trans-disciplinarity"
by Hideaki Koizumi

Keywords:
trans-disciplinarity

Introduction:
Over the past two centuries, human culture has been split into two categories, science and technology, and the humanities and arts. Furthermore, science and technology have been minutely divided into clearly specified disciplines. Thus, it has become hard to understand other disciplines at a professional level because of the intellectual walls between disciplines. The maturity of science and technology, however, has made it increasingly difficult to obtain new findings and breakthroughs only within one’s specialized discipline. New findings and technical breakthroughs are often accomplished only by bridging the gap between completely different disciplines, and this has been true for many years. For example, Newton’s system of classic dynamics was created by combining the concepts explaining the motion of astronomical objects and the falling of an object, traditionally said to be an apple, to the ground. Darwin’s theory of natural selection was an analogy of the competition in a free market described by Adam Smith. Atomism and reductionism originally came from the projection of the hierarchical structure of human language to nature by Democritos.

Although many scientists and scholars have recognized the importance of a multidisciplinary approach, it is still very difficult to transcend the borders of disciplines in practice. Such conceptual transitions have generally been made by people now considered geniuses. Current inter- or multi-disciplinary research organizations are not powerful enough to overcome the walls between disciplines, and inter- or multi-disciplinary research organizations often have not functioned as well as expected because they have been based upon only a bundle of closely, or sometimes not so closely, related disciplines. The author believes that rather than a static concept, a dynamic concept is needed to overcome this difficulty, and to bridge and fuse disciplines to enable the evolution of new comprehensive fields, e.g., mind-brain science, environmental science and educational science.

Reprinted from:
H. Koizumi, ed., "Search for Foundations of Science & Technology in the 21st Century; The Trans-disciplinary Symposium on the Frontier of Mind-Brain Science and Its Practical Applications (II), Hitachi, Ltd, Tokyo (2000).

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