Date of Original Version
This paper challenges readers to reflect on academic disciplines in a new way, through the lens of the theory of evolution. Indeed, how disciplines came into being has been largely left unexplored. This paper shows how the concepts of evolution can be productively applied to describe the development, creation, and diminishment of disciplines. These concepts include natural selection, speciation, parallel evolution, extinction, and heterosis, among others. The paper concludes that these forces lead to a prediction that a new form of organization, the transdiscipline, is evolving to become perhaps predominant.
Cohen, E., & Lloyd, S. (2014). Disciplinary evolution and the rise of the transdiscipline. Informing Science: the International Journal of an Emerging Transdiscipline, 17,189-215.