Ethics and value bias in the forensic sciences

Ruth Macklin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


This article focuses on ethical problems that arise in the practical sphere when professionals and scholars enter the forensic arena. Two different yet related stories from the author's experience are recounted. The first is drawn from the author's membership on the blue-ribbon committee convened by the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences, which issued the report entitled DNA Technology in Forensic Science in 1992. The second is an inquiry into the role of the bioethicist in the forensic setting, based on the author's response to cases in which she was invited to serve as an expert witness. The article concludes that since the forensic sciences deal with matters of truth and justice, a commitment to uphold these important values forms the moral basis for justifying the actions of those who work in this field.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1203-1206
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Forensic Sciences
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Genetics


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