University Of Tasmania
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Interdisciplinarity for social justice enterprise: intersecting education, industry and community arts perspective

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-21, 06:45 authored by Wise, K, Abbey MacDonaldAbbey MacDonald, Badham, M, Brown, N, Scott Rankin
The role of interdisciplinarity in achieving authentic and transformative learning outcomes is both contested and complex. At the same time, traditional disciplinary ways of being, doing and knowing have been further tested by the impact of COVID-19 on students, schools and communities. In Tasmania, already experiencing amongst the lowest levels of educational attainment in Australia, the educational implications of COVID-19 have been polarising. Preliminary reports have employed interdisciplinary perspectives to understand how the situation is unfolding. Extremes of privilege and poverty have intensified, with accentuated disadvantage experienced by already vulnerable groups, whilst ingenuity, adaptability and innovation have flourished elsewhere. The spectrum and range of this polarisation yield compelling evidence for the inadequate address of complex societal problems through singular disciplines or institutions. This article explores storied data generated from the intersections of interdisciplinary strategy enacted across three settings: education, creative industries and community-based arts practice. The data derive from two Tasmanian case studies where interdisciplinary collaboration between the education sector, creative industries and community is well established. In subsequent discussion, the multidisciplinary authorship team make and offer meaning from participatory lived experiences of pursuing social justice outcomes prior to and during the COVID-19 pandemic. From this, we posit how lived experiences of interdisciplinarity impact social justice enterprise in times of increasingly complex socio-economic challenge. In addressing these concerns, we elucidate the role interdisciplinarity plays in both enabling and inhibiting social justice imperatives shared across education, creative industry and community-based arts practice immediately prior to and during a global pandemic. In so doing, we elicit the ways interdisciplinary practices, partnerships and priorities recalibrate in response to global challenges.


Publication title

The Australian Educational Researcher








Faculty of Education



Place of publication

Amsterdam, Netherlands

Rights statement

© The Author(s) 2022. This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, ( which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long a you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material.

Repository Status

  • Open

Socio-economic Objectives

The creative arts; Teacher and instructor development; Expanding knowledge in creative arts and writing studies