Professor Stephen Ross to Discuss Eyewitness Identification Reform

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Who: Dr. Stephen Ross, School of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences

When: Tuesday November 13th 12:30-1:20

Where: JOY 215

Title: Implementing meaningful reform of eyewitness identification practices: Novel approaches for addressing old problems


Abstract: A swath of recent high-profile cases has increased calls for the reform of law enforcement practices to focus on the inclusion of evidence-based approaches. This demand for research-informed practices has provided social scientists with an increased opportunity to inform the development of intra-agency and public policy. Historically, though, there has been little connection between academic researchers and field practitioners resulting in challenges for producing effective change to law enforcement practices. In the area of eyewitness identification procedures, many agencies and jurisdictions have implemented new policies/statutes over the past two decades. However, the effectiveness of these reform efforts is questionable.  In this talk, Dr. Ross will discuss efforts made to reform law enforcement practices regarding the collection of eyewitness evidence and will argue that their limited effectiveness is partly a product of limited collaboration between scientists and practitioners. Based upon current efforts in Washington State, he will discuss how novel approaches that rely on a more collaborative effort between scientists and practitioners may be more effective for implementing meaningful change to law enforcement practices.

October 22, 2018