Approaches to understanding and measuring interdisciplinary scientific research (IDR): A review of the literature

Three related concepts are usually used to talk about interdisciplinary research. 1. Multidisciplinary approaches are about juxtaposing disciplinary perspectives. In other words, “They speak as separate voices”. 2. Interdisciplinary approaches are about integrating disciplinary approaches to create a holistic view. 3. Transdisciplinary approaches are about overarching synthesis that transcend disciplinary boundaries.

Author-based characterization is hardly used because it is unclear how to assign each author to a discipline.

The most common method is using bibliometric data. Rafols2010diversity.