Framing Supradisciplinary Research for Intellectualized Cyber-Physical Systems: An Unfinished Story

Imre Horvath*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
8 Downloads (Pure)


Conceptualization and design of intellectualized, socialized, and personalized cyber-physical systems (CPSs) need integration of existing knowledge across the involved disciplines, as well as exploration and synthesis of novel knowledge beyond disciplinary boundaries. The latter needs a combined use of interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary, and transdisciplinary research. Supradisciplinary research has emerged as a new doctrine of combining these research approaches from epistemological, methodological, and procedural perspectives. However, no methodology can be found in the literature that could facilitate the practical execution of supradisciplinary research programs. This position paper proposes a conceptual framework that can be used as a blueprint for operationalization of such undertakings. The framework rests on six generic pillars: (i) problematics, (ii) infrastructure, (iii) method, (iv) stakeholders, (v) operations, and (vi) knowledge. It specifies the major concerns that have to be taken into consideration in a systematic manner in developing executional scenarios for supradisciplinary research. The framework facilitates (i) management of research organization tasks, (ii) joint formation of shared research infrastructure, (ii) setting up concrete research program, (iii) academic partnering and public stakeholder involvement, (iv) process flow management and capacity/competence allocation, (v) a holistic knowledge synthesis, assessment, and consolidation, and (vi) development of tools supporting the preparation and execution of large-scale supradisciplinary research. In its current form, it does not cover the specific societal and personal issues of a successful organization of the inquiry at individual researchers, research teams, and research community levels. A community-based follow-up research may focus on the practical application and testing of the framework in concrete cases-a task that an individual researcher cannot address.

Original languageEnglish
Article number060802
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Computing and Information Science in Engineering
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository 'You share, we take care!' - Taverne project
Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.


  • cyber-physical system design and operation
  • knowledge engineering


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