Najia, Mohamad Ali (2014). Interdisciplinary people drive groundbreaking science. The Tower Undergraduate Research Journal, 6(2), 100.


Over the past 5000 years of human scientific exploration, the concept of “large interdisciplinary research teams” has only recently emerged in an effort to solve complex scientific problems of the modern era. Mammoth scientific projects, where the technical goals have been clearly defined, necessitated the need for large, globally collaborating teams. The Human Genome Project, for example, employed engineers, biologists, chemists and computer scientists spanning four continents. Resting on the successes of the sequenced genome, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in 2005 revealed the Roadmap Initiative to encourage, as they term, “new organizational models for team science.” However, have the ideas of interdisciplinary science and large teams become inappropriately intertwined for today’s research questions?