Evidence in Action between Science and Society Constructing, Validating, and Contesting Knowledge
This volume is an interdisciplinary attempt to insert a broader, historically informed perspective into current political and academic debates on the issue of evidence and the reliability of scientific knowledge.
The tensions between competing paradigms, different bodies of knowledge and the relative hierarchies between them are a crucial element of the historical and contemporary dynamics of scientific knowledge production. The negotiation of evidence is at the heart of this process. Starting from the premise that evidence constitutes a central, but also essentially contested concept in contemporary knowledge-based societies, this volume focuses on how evidence is generated and applied in practice—in other words, on “evidence in action.” The contributions analyze and compare different evidence practices within the field of science and technology, how they interlink with different forms of power, their interaction with and impact on the legal and political domain, and their relationship to other, more heterodox forms of evidence that challenge traditional notions of evidence. In doing so, this volume provides much-needed context and historical background to contemporary debates on the so-called “post-truth” society.
Evidence in Action is the perfect resource for all those interested in the relationship between science, technology, and the role of knowledge in society.
1. Introduction: Evidence in Action
Sarah Ehlers and Stefan Esselborn
Part I: Establishing Evidence: The Formation of Disciplinary Cultures
2. War, Wheat, and Crop Diseases of the Late Enlightenment: Contesting and Producing Evidence in Agriculture in Great Britain
3. Presenting Chemical Practice in Court: Forensic Toxicology in Nineteenth-Century German States
Marcus B. Carrier
4. No "Mere Accumulation of Material": Fieldwork Prctices and Embedded Evidence in Early (Latin) Americanist Anthropology
Julia E. Rodriguez
Part II: Innovating Evidence: Contemporary Technoscientific Approaches
5. Prototyping Evidence: How Artifacts Demonstrate Technological Futures
6. On Top of the Hierarchy: How Guidelines Shape Systematic Reviewing in Biomedicine
Alexander Schniedermann, Clemens Blümel, and Arno Simons
7. On the (Im)possibility of Identifying the Evidence Base of the Impact of Star Architecture Projects
Nadia Alaily-Mattar, Diane Arvanitakis, Martina Löw, and Alain Thierstein
Part III: Governing Evidence: Evidence-Based Practice and Politics
8. The Thing We Call Evidence: Toward a Situated Ontology of Evidence in Policy
Kari Lancaster and Tim Rhodes
9. "Drawing Thresholds That Make Sense": Diagrammatic Evidence and Urgency in Automatic Outbreak Detection
10. Producing Migration Knowledge: From Big Data to Evidence-Based Policy?
Part IV: Contesting Evidence: The Politics of Heterodox Evidence
11. Fearful Narratives: Evidence Production in the Visual Rhetoric of the Historic Anti-vaccine Movement in the German States
12. The Politics of Evidence: State Secrecy, Ambiguity, and Counterforensic Practice in "Missing Persons" Cases in Pakistan
13. Digital Ethnographic Art(i)Facts as Evidence: Anthropological Entanglements between Techne and Episteme