Team Science

Cross-Disciplinary — Cross-Sector Problem Solving, Collaborative Research, and Co-Production of Knowledge

Virginia Sea Grant, the Virginia Institute of Marine Science, the University of Virginia and Virginia Commonwealth University have partnered to create a professional development opportunity, funded by NSF, in the rapidly emerging area of convergent, transdisciplinary team problem-solving and research. Collaborative, multidisciplinary teams can produce innovative, integrated breakthroughs and solutions that transcend individual disciplines, and are essential to solving today’s grand societal challenges in coastal and marine environments.

Techniques and strategies you will learn:
  • How to effectively work on multidisciplinary teams.
  • The latest evidence-based communication and group leadership techniques in these cross-disciplinary problem-solving settings.
  • How to employ strategies and tools of adaptive practices that ensure team success.
  • How to lean in to constructive conflict and crucial conversations.
  • How to integrate diverse disciplinary perspectives to address a real-world challenge – enhancing site-specific resilience to climate change.


team science 2023


Team Project and deliverables

Integrate knowledge across participating disciplines on your team and the team develops a visual theoretical conceptual framework from which research questions and hypotheses can be derived regarding the resilience in the case study, Hampton, VA.  

The City of Hampton was founded in 1610 by English settlers on the lands of the indigenous community of Kecoughtan. The community was strategically located at the confluence of 3 rivers — the Elizabeth, the Nansemond, and the James — forming the Hampton Roads, which is part of the larger Tidewater area of Virginia and connected to the Chesapeake Bay. Hampton is also the location of Point Comfort (near Fort Monroe), where the first African slaves arrived in North America in 1619.

Contemporary Hampton is the home of many significant institutions including Hampton UniversityLangley Air Force BaseNASA Langley Research Center, and the Virginia Air and Space Center. Over the last two decades, Hampton has experienced a high rate of climate change-related shocks and stresses. In the coming years, the rate and intensity of the shocks and stresses is expected to escalate. Teams could build conceptual frameworks, develop research questions, and hypothesize novel applied solutions to enhance resilience, considering, e.g.:

  • Recurring flooding with associated property damage and business continuity interruptions due to loss of wetlands and protective natural systems.
  • Loss of fishing economy due to contaminated waterways and systems as well as habitat migration.

Learn from a Diverse Team of Researchers and Faculty

Funded through a National Science Foundation Innovations in Graduate Education grant, VASG, VIMS, VCU School of Medicine, and UVA Environmental Resilience Institute have partnered with leading “Science of Team Science” researchers, the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science, UVA Institute for Engagement and Negotiation, and coaches among experienced multi-disciplinary practitioners to design and offer professional development to improve teamwork, integrate different disciplinary perspectives, build trans-disciplinary problem-solving and research teams, and produce novel solutions that enhance coastal resilience in Virginia.


Applicants must be enrolled in a full-time graduate or professional degree program at an academic institution and priority is given to students enrolled in a Virginia institution of higher education. Students may be working toward a degree in any discipline as long as they are engaged in research, inquiry, problem-solving, creativity, or other scholarship that is coastal- or marine-related and relevant to coastal resilience issues. We strongly encourage members from under-represented minority groups, women, persons with disabilities, and veterans to apply for the program.

Schedule of trainings and workshops

Workshop Schedule

Students will be participating in a set of three online preparatory workshops and then an in-person 2.5-day Team Science Workshop. Participants are required to attend all scheduled sessions.

Financial Support

Costs for travel, lodging, food and other expenses will be covered for the two-day Team Science Workshop at the Science Museum of Virginia under the NSF award supporting this training. Participants who meet the participation requirements (below) will receive an additional $400 stipend upon completion of the program.

Participation Requirements for Attendees

Please note that attendance at all training sessions is mandatory and is a requirement for all students submitting applications to the program. Please do not apply if you know in advance that you will be unable to attend every session. This is a team-oriented activity, and the participation of each team member is imperative and required to achieve team goals and create Team Science program training deliverables. Participants who fail to attend any of the sessions, regardless of reason, will forfeit their $400 stipend. 

Preparatory Trainings

April 26, 2023 - 5:00PM - 8:00PM

Communication Across Disciplinary Boundaries

2-hour virtual essentials training.  Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science. 
This virtual workshop employs the Alda Method® to introduce researchers to the principles of responsive listening and empathic communication. This interactive session allows participants to begin to experiment with techniques to build trust and engage others in science.

April 27, 2023 - 5:00PM - 8:30PM

Leaning in to Constructive Conflict

½-day (3.5 hours) virtual training.  UVA Institute for Engagement & Negotiation.
Based upon conflict resolution and mediation frameworks and employing group exercises, interactive presentations, and role playing, this half day training would include:

  • Fundamentals of self-care as preparation for negotiation
  • Conflict styles, interactive presentation. (Conflict style inventory homework assigned beforehand)
  • Reaching for Higher Ground – development of group norms and behaviors
  • Role play with discomfort of ambiguity and engage others in science.

Week of April 24th, 2023 - Evening, Time TBD

Science of Team Science: Teamwork and Task-work Tactics

3-hour virtual training. Debbie Diaz Granados, VCU. 
The training will include an introduction to what team science is. This training will focus on specific, tangible tools, strategies and tactics to manage the teamwork and taskwork functions of team science. It will include introductions to reflective practices.

Team Science Workshop

May 22-24, 2023

In-Person Workshop

A two-day training designed to practice team science. UVA Environmental Resilience Institute, Charlottesville, VA. Hotel: Omni Charlottesville Hotel.
The class size will be 16 each, with disciplinary backgrounds in the quantitative sciences, coastal ecology, terrestrial ecology, other marine sciences, horticulture, engineering, construction, landscape architecture, architecture, economics, material sciences, and other relevant disciplines. These will form 4 teams of 4 students.


Team Science Registration Spring 2023
Degree Type
Attendance Requirements
Scroll to Top

Thank You!

Your request has been submitted.

Sign up for our announcements newsletter

Stay up-to-date on fellowship, internship, training, and research funding opportunities offered by Virginia Sea Grant.