How Pat Metheny came to Carolina in Mpumalanga, South Africa: using music in transdisciplinary water research

29 January 2014

Listening to music can help researchers to comprehend and gain insight into complex problems in transdisciplinary research. This article explains how members of a research group at North-West University in South Africa conducted research on a crisis in the urban settlement of Carolina in Mpumalanga Province when acid mine drainage (AMD) from local coal mining operations was found in the municipal water supply. In grappling with complex issues such as the failure of communication with local stakeholders, the group resorted to using the music of Pat Metheny’s music to come to a better understanding of the crisis.