The futures of becoming(s)
Exploring the liminal spaces between consciousness and spirituality
25 October 2023 (Wednesday), 11:00-13:00, imagine2

Transdisciplinarity and its Ontology of Liminality

Transdisciplinarity is important in the Futures literature (e.g., Klein, 2004; 2015). This paper aims to examine transdisciplinarity’s ontology of liminality and relate its importance to Future Studies. Firstly, I suggest, that Basarab Nicolescu‘s (2012) and Edgar Morin’s (2007) varieties of transdisciplinarity both have liminality present in them. This is found in the former through the relationship between subject and object (via a ‘hidden third’ term), while in the latter it can be seen in their complex thinking. Based on this, I develop an ontological theory that suggests reality is in flux- it is neither real nor constructed. Consequentially, it is neither in one ontological state nor another. This flux explains the dynamism, ambiguity and unpredictability of the world we live in. However, there are still ways of making decisions and change in such a world. I introduce the concept of ontological distance to do this. This suggests one can approximate the nature of a given ontological state. Particularly, I draw on art to do this, arguing some things are more real than others and that some things are more constructed than others, while not prescribing more importance to one or the other. I end by relating this transdisciplinary liminal ontology to the Futures methodological literature, particularly Causal Layered Analysis (Inayatullah, 1998) and General Morphological Analysis (Ritchey, 2011).

This abstract is for presenting an academic paper in English.

Doctoral Researcher
University of Leeds