Ethics and the Practice of Forensic Science

2nd Edition

Robin T. Bowen

CRC Press
Published September 19, 2017
Textbook - 254 Pages - 7 B/W Illustrations
ISBN 9781498777131 - CAT# K29761
Series: International Forensic Science and Investigation

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While one would hope that forensic scientists, investigators, and experts are intrinsically ethical by nature, the reality is that these individuals have morality as varied as the general population. These professionals confront ethical dilemmas every day, some with clear-cut protocols and others that frequently have no definitive answers.

Since the publication of the first edition of Ethics and the Practice of Forensic Science, the field of forensic science has continued to see its share of controversy. This runs the gamut of news stories from investigators, lab personnel, or even lab directors falsifying results, committing perjury, admitting to fraud, to overturned convictions, questions about bias, ethics, and what constitutes an "expert" on the witness stand.

This fully updated edition tackles all these issues—including some specific instances and cases of unethical behavior—and addresses such salient issues as accreditation requirements, standardization of ethical codes, examiner certification, and standards for education and training.

The new edition provides:

  • A new chapter on the "Ferguson Effect" faced by the criminal justice system
  • The context of forensic science ethics in relation to general scientific ethics, measurement uncertainty, and ethics in criminal justice
  • Ethical conundrums and real-world examples that forensic scientists confront every day
  • The ethics and conduct codes of 20 different forensic and scientific professional organizations
  • An outline of the National Academies of Science (NAS) recommendations and progress made on ethics in forensic science since the release of the NAS report

Ethics and the Practice of Forensic Science, Second Edition explores the range of ethical issues facing those who work in the forensic sciences—highlights the complicated nature of ethics and decision-making at the crime scene, in the lab, and in the courts. The book serves both as an essential resource for laboratories to train their employees and as an invaluable textbook for the growing number of courses on ethics in criminal justice and forensic science curricula.

Accompanying PowerPoint® slides and an Instructor’s Manual with Test Bank are available to professors upon qualifying course adoption.


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