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Environmental Values

Technology and Epistemology: Environmental Mentalities and Urban Water Usage

Nicole Stuart

Environmental Values 16(2007): 417-431. doi: 10.3197/096327107X243213


This paper examines the mentalities associated with the transformation of 'nature' into urban life in industrial societies, with particular reference to the conversion of rainwater into tap water. It argues that industrial technologies dissociate urban dwellers from the natural environment upon which they depend. The paper maintains that this dissociation has contributed to mentalities encouraging the depletion and degradation of water resources and critically examines technological strategies for managing urban water use. The paper argues that epistemological systems must be reformed in conjunction with changing technological systems before environmental management strategies are likely to succeed. It concludes by suggesting ways in which urban water provision could be transformed so as to encourage greater ecological awareness and activism.

KEYWORDS: Urban, water, technology, epistemology

REFERENCES to other articles in Environmental Values:

Conflicting Perspectives on Water in a Swedish Railway Tunnel Project. Annelie Sjölander-Lindqvist

CITATIONS in other Environmental Values articles

Reflexive Water Management in Arid Regions: The Case of Iran. Mohammad Reza Balali , Jozef Keulartz and Michiel Korthals

The Positioned Construction of Water Values: Pluralism, Positionality and Praxis. Antonio A.R. Ioris

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