Interdisciplinary Research

three people standing near train tracks
Crossing disciplinary boundaries is what we do

Profound changes are taking place in the post-secondary sector. Inquiry increasingly crosses disciplinary boundaries to address questions of societal importance. Our faculty’s success depends on our thoughtful engagement with what it means to work both within and beyond disciplines to address complex environmental and social issues. 

Profound changes are also taking place in society as the pace of technological change accelerates, environmental concerns reach crisis levels, and demands for justice intensify. These changes provide an imperative to focus our research on the world’s most pressing challenges. We will:

Be at the forefront of defining and framing emergent environmental and sustainability problems that require an interdisciplinary approach

Enhance inter-faculty research collaborations, especially in areas that align with the University’s strategic priorities.

Ensure a faculty and research staff complement that supports interdisciplinarity in research and teaching


man looking into a microscope

Our impact depends on a willingness and readiness to engage beyond our campus, contributing to and leading local, national and international conversations, research projects and other collaborations. We will:

Collaborate with external partners in shaping our research agenda and in co-creating and mobilizing knowledge.

Develop and implement an internationalization strategy that prioritizes partnerships and participation that increase the impact of our work.

Contribute meaningfully to the achievement of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, both in Canada and globally.


Walking Bridge

Cross-campus collaboration

The Faculty of Environment’s approach to research and pedagogy arises from and is reinforced by the academic backgrounds of our faculty complement. Approximately one-half of our faculty members have degrees in more than one discipline and are active participants in many of the University of Waterloo’s interdisciplinary programs and institutes.