Philosophical Dialogue as Field Philosophy
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Philosophical Dialogue as Field Philosophy

Successful collaboration requires effective communication. Differences in professional, disciplinary, or cultural background can create opportunities for innovative collaboration, but they also create challenges to free-flowing com­munication. What follows is an account of a collaborative effort to develop philosophical tools designed to help meet these challenges—tools that are now in high demand and are being adapted and exported to new contexts. Our effort—the Toolbox Dialogue Initiative (TDI)—originated in the collaboration of scientists and philosophers at the University of Idaho (UI) in 2005, and it has affected thousands of researchers from hundreds of disciplines since then. That philosophy could be used to clarify the communicative problems of interdisci­plinary teams is not at all obvious, especially to those who are familiar with the culture of academic philosophy. Perhaps it is less surprising, then, that the rele­vance of philosophy to interdisciplinary communication was suggested by grad­uate students outside of philosophy who were engaged in an Integrative Graduate Education and Traineeship (IGERT) project.


O’Rourke, M., Vasko, S. E., McLeskey, C., & Rinkus, M. A. (2020). Philosophical dialogue as field philosophy. In E. Brister & R. Frodeman (Eds.), A guide to field philosophy: Case studies and practical strategies (pp. 48–65). New York: Routledge.



May 18, 2020


TDI Approach, TDI Theory