Psychology and the Law: when the Rubber Meets the Road
Biases plague many domains of our life and the legal system is no exception. Experts are therefore relied upon heavily. as their judgment and decision making are regarded as objective and impartial. Drawing from the field of criminal justice, Dror will present research and evidence from real casework, showing 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. Dror will articulate the psychological mechanisms by which forensic and other experts make biased and erroneous decisions. Then he will show how this research can assist in identifying such weaknesses and in providing practical ways to mitigate them. However, these psychological cognitive biases creep into the legal domain in many different and unexpected ways which Dror will demonstrate during his talk and surprise the audience with.
Itiel Dror (PhD Harvard) is a cognitive neuroscientist who is interested in the cognitive architecture that underpins expert decision making. Dror's research, published in over 130 research articles, demonstrated how contextual information can influence judgments and decision making of experts. He has worked in a variety of domains, from policing and aviation, to medical experts and bankers, showing that even hard working and competent experts can make unintentional errors in evaluating data. Dror has worked with many agencies in various countries to minimize error and enhance decision making. More information is at: www.cci-hq.com