Reviewing the literature allowed the identification of three attributes in team science that were repeatedly presented. The first being, when referring to team science, the idea of cross-disciplinary collaboration is inherent. Rosenfield (1992) identifies several different approaches to address the spectrum of cross-disciplinary collaboration.
Cross-disciplinary teams may utilize approaches that are unidisciplinary (team members are from same field), multidisciplinary (in which experts from different scientific fields collaborate yet reside in their topic areas), interdisciplinary (results and expertise from two or more scientific fields are combined), or ...view middle of the document...
Even before any collaboration begins, different disciplines may posses different languages and may have similar terms with different meaning and connotations (Pellmar & Eisenburg, 2008;Sommerville,1998). The importance of widely agreed upon and accepted definitions, terms and key concepts cannot be over-emphasized.
The second defining attribute of the SciTS is teams can vary significantly by size, organizational complexity, and geographic scope (Stokols, et al., 2006). Teams can refer to a few participants working within a university, or hundreds of researchers spread across organizations and continents (Cogburn, 2002).The significant variation across multiple scientific disciplines, and the magnitude of the analysis (from cellular level to population level), affects the size and complexity of a given team (Hall et al., 2008). See Figure 2. The increasing complexity of a research problem, shapes how much skill and knowledge integration is needed to explain or solve the particular problem, and thus requires different doses of trans-disciplinary collaboration (Hall et al., 2008).
A third defining attribute of the SciTS is that although researchers work towards a shared solution to the research problem, there may be differences of specific goals at the individual or discipline level. For example some researchers on a team may have the goal of the research to change public health policy while others have a goal for informing clinical best practices. Although both focus on a common goal, disputes and disagreements have the potential to erupt from differing worldviews and priorities.
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