Cross-school, multi-investigator, game-changing research
From documenting policy issues surrounding Latino immigration, to computational analysis of handwriting, to studying the hibernation and sleep trends of lemurs, interdisciplinary research at Duke takes many forms and can range from a single scholar to a cross-campus team of investigators. Research across disciplines is often team-based, and welcomes contributions from faculty, staff, and students alike to expand the frontiers of knowledge in diverse fields. Institutes and centers at Duke are the main catalysts for interdisciplinary research, though the university supports many types of innovative scholarly research and artistic activity that crosses the boundaries of Duke's departments and Schools.
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Ed Balleisen—Associate Professor of History, Senior Fellow at the Kenan Institute for Ethics, and Project Director of Rethinking Regulation, a Kenan Institute for Ethics program—has also been working with The Tobin Project since 2005. The Tobin Project seeks to identify collaborative, interdisciplinary research agendas; to encourage academic work on those agendas; and to connect academics in its networks to national policy-makers. Ed says that his experience working with Tobin has had a big impact on his own intellectual engagement: the sorts of questions that he asks; the audiences he tries to reach; the communities he tries to foster. He see KIE’s Rethinking Regulation project as an attempt to replicate Tobin’s model of interdisciplinary collaborative research and interaction with policy-makers, on the basis of a local network of scholars.
That work is discussed in a recent Chronicle of Higher Education piece, and has now been recognized by the MacArthur Foundation, who just awarded The Tobin Project a $750,000 grant as one of their 2013 grants awarded to “Creative and Effective Institutions."
See Ed and other scholars discuss their work with Tobin in this short video: