Friday, April 21, 2023

Careers at the intersection of STEM and Humanities for students to explore.

Recently in Episode - 61 of 'Headlines ke Peche Shekhar ke Saath' of The Print (Digital News), one of the viewer's asked Shekhar Gupta (editor-in-chief) - Why is there so much fuss about syllabus changes in NCERT Social Science? Social Sciences and History don't impart any marketable skills nor provide job opportunities. So, why are students still studying these subjects and yet hope to build a career out of this? (paraphrased in my words).

Such questions reflect the larger issues pertaining to the mindset of the mainstream society which is lopsided in favour of STEM. (We did discuss this phenomenon at length in our previous blog. Please do check out:). These prevailing career beliefs make our efforts worthwhile and motivate us to write on the intersection of STEM and Non-STEM (Humanities) careers to raise awareness, broaden the tunnel vision and expand the choices for career selection among parents and students. 

In our previous blog, we made a case for the interdisciplinary problem solving approach in 21st century, challenges which are complex and have global implications for humanity at large. 

In this blog, we attempt to distill down these esoteric thoughts to practicality and practice of such interdisciplinary disciplines. 

So let's begin by peeling off the first layer of the onion :) What is Interdisciplinary? 

The term “interdisciplinary” refers to the interconnectedness of subjects or disciplines. It brings together various branches of knowledge and encourages the individuals to assimilate multiple perspectives and connect the dots

Example, the economic downturn of a country (think contemporary Sri Lankan crisis) may put the economists at the center. However, the economist does not function in isolation and has to collaborate and work in integration with politicians, bureaucrats, think tanks, policy makers, researchers, inter-governmental agencies, social workers, local communities, businesses (big and small) etc. to plan, execute and audit such large-scale policy matters and its on-the-ground implementation.

Of course, by no means we can cover the length and breadth of all Interdisciplinary Courses and Careers being offered. We are making an attempt here to provide some glimpses of the practice of interdisciplinary careers, so that it removes the blind spots of students and expands their mind-space, so that they can make the right career choices.