The Anatomy of Pseudoscientific Criminal Investigative Techniques
This continuing project involves an examination of pseudoscientific policing practices. The purpose of this research is to subject various policing techniques to incisive scientific scrutiny. There is a growing gap in policing between the use of various techniques (e.g., Reid Technique, criminal profiling, hypnosis) by police agencies and the lack of compelling empirical evidence that those techniques are reliable, valid, or useful. The specific goals of the research are to (a) identify a range of questionable policing practices, (b) understand why police officers use those unsubstantiated and untested techniques, (c) enhance the scientific foundation of the police profession, and (d) reduce the scientific-practitioner gap by improving knowledge transfer from researchers to law enforcement officers. In the end, This research will help in the professionalization of policing by providing law enforcement officers with the knowledge required to distinguish techniques that lack sound scientific support from those that have scientific support. Part of this research involves a narrative review of the published literature on various topics. The narrative review will examine the extent to which the literature on an investigative technique rests on common sense or empirical justifications.
01 Jan 2007
31 Dec 2008
Local, municipal and regional public administration
Strategic Research Theme