Transdisciplinary systems engineering: Implications, challenges and research agenda

Nel Wognum*, Cees Bil, Fredrik Elgh, Margherita Peruzzini, Josip Stjepandić, Wim J.C. Verhagen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

64 Citations (Scopus)
28 Downloads (Pure)


Transdisciplinary processes have been the subject of research since several decades already. Transdisciplinary processes are aimed at solving ill-defined and socially relevant problems. Many researchers have studied transdisciplinary processes and have tried to understand the essentials of transdisciplinarity. Many engineering problems can be characterised as ill-defined and socially relevant, too. Although transdisciplinary engineering cannot widely be found in the literature yet, a transdisciplinary approach is deemed relevant for many engineering problems. With this paper we aim to present an overview of the literature on research into transdisciplinary processes and investigate the relevance of a transdisciplinary approach in engineering domains. After a brief description of past research on transdisciplinarity, implications for engineering research, engineering practice, and engineering education are identified. In all three areas, the current situation is described, while challenges are identified that still exist. The paper ends with a research agenda for transdisciplinary engineering.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)58-89
Number of pages32
JournalInternational journal of Agile Systems and Management
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Engineering education
  • Industry 4.0
  • Project-based learning
  • Social relevance
  • Transdisciplinary collaboration
  • Transdisciplinary engineering
  • Transdisciplinary processes
  • Transdisciplinary research
  • Transdisciplinary systems


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