Locating geography in transdisciplinarity: a case study of subsistence fishing on the urban American Gulf Coast

Authors: Sarita Panchang*, Research Associate, Social Research & Evaluation Center, Louisiana State University , Lauren Drakapulos, Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Geography, University of Guelph, Canada, Meghna Marjadi, Doctoral candidate, Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, UMass Amherst, Zach Koehn, Early Career Fellow, Center for Ocean Solutions, Stanford University, Lian Guo, Doctoral Candidate, Organismic & Evolutionary Biology, UMass Amherst, Dustin Robertson, PhD Candidate, Urban Studies, Tulane University
Topics: Coupled Human and Natural Systems, Applied Geography, Geographic Thought
Keywords: transdisciplinary; socio-environmental; urban; political ecology; praxis
Session Type: Virtual Paper
Day: 4/9/2021
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:15 AM
Room: Virtual 17
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Transdisciplinary research has been increasingly described as a relevant framework to bolster co-creation of knowledge and broaden the context of research to address complex policy issues, particularly those at the intersection of socio-environmental systems. Yet, in practice, bridging disparate inquiries is a complicated task and goes beyond merely methodological questions. There are few documented examples showing how researchers might engage transdisciplinary work through research conception, design, implementation, and follow-up. In this presentation we reflect on a transdisciplinary collaborative project that examines localized effects of urban and environmental governance on subsistence fishing as a foodway with key health implications. Authors were doctoral students from several different fields including geography, urban planning, public health, and fish biology. We reflect on how our topic is a fitting one for transdisciplinary approaches and on our experience in relation to corresponding theory. We provide key insights for other researchers considering transdisciplinary work and present novel roles for synthesis, or the meaningful triangulation of inter-sectoral data sources. We aim for this discussion to strengthen the relationship between theory and practice within transdisciplinary work on socio-environmental issues.

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