I make no secret of the fact that I love interdisciplinary research - I have a strong natural science background, consider myself a social science researcher, and love working with arts and humanities concepts/methods/researchers. All of that means my research takes (what I consider) super interesting directions, but it also means that I have some additional challenges that someone firmly ensconced in one field does not.
I only sometimes know what people are talking about.
Each discipline has its own jargon, including using the same words in vastly different ways. For example, in public health the term "project" usually refers to a specific grant, research question, or intervention. It has clear time constraints and specific deliverables. Silly me, I thought everyone talked about projects in this way until I sat down for my first anthropology/communication class. Suddenly, project could mean your research agenda, the community you're working with, your life purpose, or any number of broader LIFE projects that it took me a while to understand. So... yeah, the same word can mean different things.
I spend a lot of time talking about methods and theory.
I love working with arts and humanities researchers because they look at health in ways that I think get at a fuller part of humanity (e.g. theater as a mechanism for social change or theories of apparatuses of power) than some of the more tradition health science methods. That means, however, that I have to devote a good amount of time (and manuscript space) to explaining a theory or a method that isn't often used in health research. I can't be super mad about that, though, since having to be explicit helps strengthen and solidify my own arguments. #win
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