Metallic iron for water treatment: A knowledge system challenges mainstream science
Citable Link (URL):http://resolver.sub.uni-goettingen.de/purl?gs-1/9015
First published (peer reviewed)
Fresenius Environmental Bulletin 2011; 20(10) p.2632-2637
A knowledge system (KS) is a knowledge that is unique to a given group of persons. This form of knowledge may have a local or natural origin and is linked to the community that has produced it. On the contrary, the core of mainstream science (MS) is the desire to profoundly understand processes, through sequential studies such as hypothesis formulation, experiment and prediction. Thus, KS is communitarian and MS is universal. KS can be understood and rendered universal through MS. In general, a process discovery (know-how) may be intuitive, accidental, conjectural or inspirational but outcomes should be predictable and repeatable as soon as the know-why is achieved by MS. This paper argues that the technology of using metallic iron for water treatment has all the characteristics of a KS and that promoters of this technology have deliberately rejected scientific arguments leading to the know-why of the fortuitous discovery. Consequently, the technology has developed into an impasse where controversial discoveries are reported on all relevant aspects. It is concluded that the integrity of science in endangered by this communitarian behaviour.
Manuskriptversion von 2011