dissertation | Made-In-STS-UCL | UCL Department of Science and Technology Studies (STS)

How Iodine changed its meaning; Lessons for Classification in Nutrition Science

Summary: This dissertation examines current controversies in nutrition science from the point of view of the philosophy of science. The historical case study of iodine shows how the meaning of term changed from a purely chemical definition, to incorporate its dietary role as a nutrient. The argument is made that the meaning of nutrient-terms change and are made more precise, following LaPorte (2003). The current classification of nutrients is outlined, and are shown to constitute a natural kind, against the social-constructivist argument of Orland (2010). The ramifications of these findings are also explored for current nutrition science. The concept of de-precification is introduced to explain the vague use of nutrient-terms. Finally, the open-textured nature of nutrients is identified as a possible factor in current nutrition controversies.

Information

TitleHow Iodine changed its meaning; Lessons for Classification in Nutrition Science
AuthorJames Clark
ModuleHPSCGA98 Research Project
Session2017-18
LevelMSc
AssignmentThe main assignment for this class is a research project culminating in an report or
dissertation not more than 10,000 words.
CreditAuthor
Other informationSTS academics supervise student projects in HPSCGA98.
CitationJames Clark. 2018. “How Iodine changed its meaning; Lessons for Classification in Nutrition Science ” UCL Science and Technology Studies. HPSCGA98
Research Project.
ActionDownload essay (Clark. 2018. How Iodine changed its meaning; Lessons for Classification in Nutrition Science)