Horizontal Thinking at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln

NeInSci,” University of Nebraska – Lincoln, downloaded 27 June 2005, http://www.unl.edu/gradstudies/GSAP/INDEX.html (from private email).

Nebraska Symposium on Interdisciplinary Graduate Science Research
Tuesday, September 27, 2005
8am – 3pm
UNL City Campus Union

The first annual NeInSci (Nebraska Symposium on Interdisciplinary Graduate Science Research) will be held on Tuesday September 27, 2005 at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln City Campus Union. The symposium is designed to open interdepartmental dialogue and encourage possible research collaborations among UNL graduate students in participating departments, which include.

Agronomy and Horticulture, Food Science
Animal Science, Mathematics
Biochemistry, Physics & Astronomy
Biological Sciences, Psychology
Chemistry, School of Natural Resources
Computer Science & Engineering, Toxicology
Veterinary & Biomedical Sciences

The event includes a poster session, open to all graduate students from the participating departments, and selected student presentations on ongoing interdisciplinary research. A complimentary box lunch will be provided for all registered participants. Register online at http://www.chem.unl.edu/plu/neinsci/. In addition, several $250 research travel and $1000 research support grants will be awarded following the day’s activities. Participants can apply for these grants online.

All UNL faculty, staff, graduate and undergraduate students are invited to attend. For additional information or to pre-register for the Symposium, go to http://www.chem.unl.edu/plu/neinsci/. Or contact Kelly Mercier, Co-chair, NeInSci Steering Committee, 721 Hamilton Hall, 402-472-5316 (lab),
Sponsored by
Office of Graduate Studies
Phi Lambda Upsilon
Department of Chemistry
& Participating Departments

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What is horizontal thinking?

4 thoughts on “Horizontal Thinking at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln”

  1. I imagine something could be considered at the grad level for studying the options and possibilities behind the reconfiguration of the Midwest in the wake of the death of the auto industry. I noticed you linked to Krugman’s opinion on the issue, but was left after reading that and speaking with my father about what the government and private sector could do that an interdisciplinary project by economics, geography, poli-sci, anthropology and civil engineering students to explore options could be quite fun.

  2. Wow! I forgot I even wrote this psot!

    This is why I blog — it keeps things in my mind…

    A disappointing thing I found in grad school is that the system really is set up for ‘silos of excellence’ — so the symposium is not so much a mark of horizontal thinking, as much as a diversity in vertical thinking.

    Considering that poverty spirals, with worse and worse people moving in to take the place of those who could or would leave, the problems places like Detroit have are very severe. [1] It may be that the industrial midwest just cannot economically support the population that is has. [2]

    [1] http://www.tdaxp.com/archive/2008/06/13/clearing-the-ghettos.html
    [2] http://www.tdaxp.com/archive/2008/12/08/the-decline-of-the-industrial-midwest.html

  3. I am actually the person who organized this event and stumbled upon your blog just now. The event actually was a failure, IMHO, as 1) the participation was marginal, and 2) it was not continued after 2005. I fully agree that graduate work is very isolating, and I think most institutions are set up for that. It was very disappointing since there are no pure sciences anymore, no pure politics, everything is a shade of grey. Graduate students are pushed to their limits with their vertical thinking so much than horizontal thinking never occurs. That requires time away from your primary project.

  4. Kelly,

    Thanks for commenting! It’s an honor!

    From a practical standpoint, I think the challenge is to find an interdisciplinary way for individuals to still have programs of research that get published.

    But once someone begins to learn both the substantive area and has a grasp of its methodology, the grad school career is nearly at an end…

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