Science and Pseudoscience in Law Enforcement

Science and Pseudoscience in Law Enforcement Pseudoscience and questionable science are largely neglected problems in police and other law enforcement work. In this primer, the authors delineate the key differences between science and pseudoscience, presenting 10 probabilistic indicators or warning signs, such as lack of falsifiability, absence of safeguards against confirmation bias, and lack of self-correction, that can help consumers of the police literature to distinguish scientific from pseudoscientific claims. Each of these warning signs is illustrated with an example from law enforcement. By attending to the differences between scientific and pseudoscientific assertions, police officers and other law enforcement officials can minimize their risk of errors and make better real-world decisions. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Criminal Justice and Behavior SAGE

Science and Pseudoscience in Law Enforcement

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Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
Copyright © by SAGE Publications
ISSN
0093-8548
eISSN
1552-3594
DOI
10.1177/0093854808321526
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Pseudoscience and questionable science are largely neglected problems in police and other law enforcement work. In this primer, the authors delineate the key differences between science and pseudoscience, presenting 10 probabilistic indicators or warning signs, such as lack of falsifiability, absence of safeguards against confirmation bias, and lack of self-correction, that can help consumers of the police literature to distinguish scientific from pseudoscientific claims. Each of these warning signs is illustrated with an example from law enforcement. By attending to the differences between scientific and pseudoscientific assertions, police officers and other law enforcement officials can minimize their risk of errors and make better real-world decisions.

Journal

Criminal Justice and BehaviorSAGE

Published: Oct 1, 2008

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