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Type: Journal article
Title: Jack-of-all-trades, master of none: Postgraduate perspectives on interdisciplinary health research in Australia
Author: Carey, Gemma Elizabeth
Smith, James
Citation: BMC Health Services Research, 2007; 7:www1-www6
Publisher: BioMed Central
Issue Date: 2007
ISSN: 1472-6963
School/Discipline: School of Population Health and Clinical Practice : Public Health
Statement of
Gemma E Carey and James A Smith
Abstract: Background: Interdisciplinary health research is increasingly perceived as an expectation of research institutions and funding bodies within Australia. However, little consideration has been given to the extent to which this re-orientation has produced a new type of researcher – an interdisciplinary health researcher. Discussion: As cross-enrolled postgraduate research students, we assert that we do not have an intellectual home. Rather, we must forge a virtual intellectual home through the process of bridging disciplines. In this paper we explain that this virtual home affords us the role of 'interlockers' in future health research. The interlocker role privileges a breadth of understandings across disciplines, rather than a depth in one. Summary: We conclude by reiterating that there is an undeniable need for interdisciplinary health research, and that the roles and actions of interdisciplinary health researchers need to be better understood and catered for. We therefore call for increased consideration and discussion concerning the future roles and capacities of interdisciplinary health researchers such as ourselves.
Rights: © 2007 Carey and Smith; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
RMID: 0020070529
DOI: 10.1186/1472-6963-7-48
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Appears in Collections:Public Health publications

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