IAS 5×5: 5 People, 5 Perspectives, 5 Meetings
Explore Together, Build Your Interdisciplinary Community
The Institute for Advanced Study’s new 5×5 initiative brings together small groups people (about 5) from differing disciplinary perspectives for a low-stakes, short-term exploration (about 5 gatherings over several months). Examples of topics or themes for exploration might be democracy, intelligence, food, or cultural life.
The goals of 5×5 are to:
- Find a common language for understanding questions and methods across disciplines
- Bring diverse disciplinary perspectives to bear on a topic in an integrative way
- Expand participants’ intellectual community and networks as a basis for future collaboration
Groups may be organized around a theme or topic of common interest, readings, an activity, or idea, or just bring together individuals the IAS thinks would find interesting common ground. The IAS has the responsibility for putting groups together; unlike a grant proposal or an IAS Research and Creative Collaborative, you don’t have to do the advance work to identify co-conspirators.* You are welcome to list individuals or types of people or disciplines whose work you would like to know more about, or suggest colleagues or others whom you think would be interested in participating in a 5×5. Participants may include faculty, staff, graduate students, or community members from outside of the University.
We hope to put together about 10 groups in 2016–17 on a rolling basis.
What you may gain from applying:
- A one-to-one meeting with an IAS faculty facilitator interested in learning more about your work and ideas and how we might support them through the 5×5 initiative or in other ways
- The potential to expand your intellectual and institutional networks
- Perhaps an opportunity to investigate or indulge a passion not within your usual scope
- If you become a participant, fulfill your commitment to the group, and write a short report, you will receive $500 in professional development funds.
Each group will have the help of an IAS facilitator to get started and a budget of up to $1,000 for materials, lunches, field trips, or other expenses. The IAS staff is also willing to consult or facilitate if the group wants to continue, develop a project or event together, make connections outside the University, etc. We hope all the participants will find the 5×5 stimulating; expectations about outcomes beyond expanding participants’ networks and experience finding a common language for discussions across disciplines are open-ended.
You may apply at any time; we will consider applications on a first-come, first-serve basis. One of two IAS faculty facilitators will schedule one-to-one conversations with each applicant to learn more about your interests and ideas and to consider potential connections with the interests of other applicants. If you apply by Thanksgiving, we will try to schedule the one-to-one conversation between late November and early February. If you submit your application by December 15, we will schedule the conversation at some point during spring semester.
*If you already have an idea for an interdisciplinary project or investigation and a group of people who want to work together on it, let us know. You should consider applying for an IAS Research and Creative Collaborative grant. You can find more information here.