It is rightly observed that the Bible is not a book, but a book of books. In the same way theology and religious studies is not a discipline, but a discipline of disciplines. Thus, by its very nature research into theology and religious studies is interdisciplinary. Researchers in the Faculty of Divinity have a wide range of training and disciplinary expertise that is unparalleled in any other faculty.
Theological research can involve investigations that are historical, linguistic, philosophical, anthropological, literary or scientific, and any combination of these. This was always the case. However, the development of modern academic disciplines with their own specialist literature, methods and canons of knowledge has brought new challenges. It requires researchers in theology and religious studies to be adept in bringing insights from other disciplines to bear on their own research and it needs the ability to engage patiently in meaningful dialogue with researchers across disciplinary boundaries.
Whilst intellectual combustion often occurs at and across disciplinary boundaries, this is not the only place that intellectual progress is made. Indeed, good interdisciplinary research depends on healthy disciplinary research cultures. Disciplinary research cultures feed interdisciplinary research, and the same is true vice versa.