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‘No good way of measuring interdisciplinarity’

No single metric can accurately capture the interdisciplinary of a piece of research, according to a report.

The report, published on 8 December, looked at different ways of calculating interdisciplinarity, but found that many widely used indicators produced inconsistent results. The assessment was produced by the technology company Digital Science and commissioned by Research Councils UK.

In a press release, Ian Viney, director of evaluation at the Medical Research Council, said that he had expected that some indicators “might prove better for suggesting whether work was more or less interdisciplinary” but that “it was a surprise that some of the indicators gave entirely conflicting results”.

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