Neurology Central

Interdisciplinary research into dementia: a personal view

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As a researcher for the last 25 years, I have seen the coming and goings of a range of approaches to research into dementia and science in general. Currently, the in-vogue approach, as seen in the review of many grants and publications, is described in the terms of either ‘interdisciplinary’ or ’multidisciplinary’, which have become the favorite adjectives of recent times. Of course these terms imply that the author has broadened their approach in tackling a particular problem, or there is an attempt to bring in new individuals and therefore new skills to tackle a problem. This is on the whole is to be applauded and has more chances of success than the ultrafocused approaches that were in-vogue in the 1990’s.

There is a tendency as there is in all walks of life, with the rise of social media and bulletpoint reporting, to try and think of snappy terms to capture an apparent new trend, for example other common phrases in grants and publications are: “from bench to bedside” or “disease in a dish”, so this leads to the question: how ‘interdisciplinary’ is this apparently ‘new’ approach?

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