Valuable research results threaten to gather dust in university libraries if they are not put into practice. While transdisciplinary research seems to become increasingly important in sciences, funding programs and media, there are still many misunderstandings to be clarified. In their recently published article, ecologist Bea Maas from the University of Vienna and her international co-authors discuss the opportunities and challenges of this disciplinary integration. With numerous examples from bird and bat research, they show how different disciplines such as biology, psychology and technology can jointly contribute to and improve the sustainable development of agricultural landscapes.
The United Nations Global Goals set specific requirements for sustainable development, often at the crossroads of society, economy and the environment. Strong partnerships are highlighted as key to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. “From research to practice is no different,” explains Bea Maas, lead author of the recent perspectives article in Basic and Applied Ecology. She and her colleagues argue for more cross-disciplinary collaboration between different disciplines and stakeholders. Whether and how this collaboration can contribute to achieving sustainability goals depends, the authors say, on whether findings from other disciplines are merely taken into account or actually integrated.