Overview of methods

Actor constellation – workshop participants (G. Wülser)

Actor constellation

A role-play for jointly sorting out the relevance of various involved actors for tackling a specific research question
(K. Herweg)


A poll for consolidating expert views on an issue using ratings and arguments.
(K. Herweg)

Emancipatory boundary critique

A set of questions supporting non-experts in critically challenging an expert’s suggested solution to a problem and the solution’s social and ecological implications.

(M. Stauffacher)

Give-and-take matrix

A tool for identifying pieces of knowledge to be shared between subparts of inter- and transdisciplinary projects
(G. Wülser)

Most significant change

A story-based, qualitative method for uncovering most significant project impacts experienced by individuals.
(M. Rossini, http://blog.wbkolleg.unibe.ch/?p=1149)

Nomadic concepts

A heuristic tool for exchanging understandings of concepts across disciplinary, professional and cultural boundaries.

(M. Stauffacher)

Research marketplace

A tool to initiate bilateral and small group exchange between (sub)projects that need to be linked.
Scenario integration photo

Scenario integration

Using scenario planning, this tool allows for collectively drafting possible future developments of a societal challenge
(C. Pohl)

Soft systems methodology

A systems thinking based tool for creating shared understandings of a problem situation, working out possible improvements and deciding on the one(s) to implement

(G. Wülser)


A story-based, qualitative method for retrospectively assembling crucial events in a collective process.
(G. Wülser)

Three types of knowledge tool

A tool for tailoring research questions to (societal) knowledge demands.
(G. Wülser)

Toolbox approach

A tool to uncover implicit assumptions and shared understandings of scientific disciplines and to oppose them to the thought styles of other disciplines.
Venn diagram (B. Pearce)

Venn diagram tool

A diagram for forming groups around joint topics based on participants’ background, expertise, and interest.