Original Research

Using a transdisciplinary approach for environmental crisis research in History

Elize van Eeden
The Journal for Transdisciplinary Research in Southern Africa | Vol 6, No 1 | a127 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/td.v6i1.127 | © 2010 Elize van Eeden | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 02 March 2016 | Published: 04 April 2010

About the author(s)

Elize van Eeden, NWU, Vaal Triangle Campus, South Africa

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Although it is true that each local area or region possesses its own historiography – and for that matter its own environmental historiography – there should not be much difference in the research methodology, sources and pitfalls or drawbacks of doing environmental history research in labelled environmental crisis areas. This article presents a concise historiography on dealing with environmental crisis in literature is provided. This is followed by a proposed transdisciplinary (TD)-methodological structure that can serve as a guideline to specifically to environmental historians, and perhaps other discipl ines in the humanities , that studying local or regional environmental crises. A local environment in South Africa, namely the Far West Rand, serves as an example for conducting TD research that features an environmental cris is.

The paper concludes by also, amongst others, suggesting that environmental historians and other environmental experts in a variety of fields and disciplines in South Africa and Africa should form an Environmental Studies Association to support one another, particularly in their efforts to work together in interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary ways with researchers from a broad range of academic fields. This paper therefore serves merely as a debate to open up discussions for refining the perspectives and existing methodologies of research in environmental history.


Environmental History; Environmental Research Methodology; Transdisciplinary research; Far West Rand research; Environmental crisis research


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Crossref Citations

1. Debating Some Past and Present Research Frameworks and Methodologies in History on Places and their Peoples in South Africa
Elize S. van Eeden
African Historical Review  vol: 45  issue: 2  first page: 113  year: 2013  
doi: 10.1080/17532523.2013.857095