The Transversity

Brett Thomas

This series anticipates engagement with large issues revolving around the emergence of a transdisciplinary university including its impact on early and middle stage researchers, students, administrators, knowledge generation and dissemination, the peer-review process, and future curricula. Perhaps we can even suggest a new label for this new institution – the Transversity. Currently, institutions of higher education are called universities. Uni is Latin for one. Versity stems from Latin veritas, meaning truth. Trans is Latin (trare) for to cross, over, beyond, through and zig-zag (lateral movement). Transverse means lying across something, moving from side to side (Hoad, 1996) (akin to iterative border crossing during intellectual border-work). The word Transversity could mean seeking the truth by moving back and forth among between disciplines and between the academy and civil society. This moniker respects that the new TD university (the Transversity) would succeed through a combination of: (a) disciplinary work, (b) scholarship between and among the disciplines, and (c) knowledge generation beyond academic disciplines and the academy and across sectors external to the university – the essence of transdisciplinarity (Nicolescu, 1985).