- This event has passed.
Why Race Matters: Spotting Issue of Expert Bias in the Courtroom
April 7, 2022 @ 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Why Race Matters // April 7
Spotting Issue of Expert Bias in the Courtroom
Speaker: Dr. Itiel Dror
Thursday April 7, 1:00pm – 4:00pm
Biases plague many domains of our life, and the legal system is no exception. Therefore, experts are heavily relied upon as their judgment and decision making is regarded as objective and impartial. Drawing from the field of criminal justice, I will present research and evidence from real casework that many different types of biases affect even experts, including fingerprinting and DNA forensic laboratory decision making. Legal and forensic evaluations are highly impacted (and can be distorted) by irrelevant contextual information or even by the context in which information is presented or obtained. Confirmation bias and other cognitive biases that I will discuss are implicit and impact hard working, dedicated and competent experts, and thus are widespread but hard to detect. I will articulate the psychological mechanisms by which forensic and other experts make biased and erroneous decisions. Then I will show how this research can assist in identifying and exposing such weaknesses and in providing practical ways to mitigate them.