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The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine
Committee on Law and Justice
Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education
Support for Forensic Science Research:
Improving the Scientific Role of the National Institute of Justice
Forensic Science cover

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Forensic report brief

 The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) asked the Committee on Law and Justice to examine its recent efforts to advance forensic science research and to recommend ways to improve its research program. Support for Forensic Science Research: Improving the Scientific Role of the National Institute of Justice indicates that NIJ has made a number of very useful changes to its process for soliciting and awarding research grants, thereby improving the agency’s scientific capability. Taken together, these efforts have (1) restored authority that is appropriate for a science agency and addressed some previous concerns about NIJ’s independence; and (2) contributed to the building of a research infrastructure necessary to develop and sustain research that advances forensic science methods. However, the committee believes additional improvements are still needed. In order to build upon the agency’s recent progress, the committee recommends that NIJ’s efforts focus on developing a strategic plan, building a research infrastructure, achieving funding stability, and evaluating and communicating the impact of their research program.

Sponsor: National Institute of Justice

Press Release

Presentation slides for report

Read a statement by the NIJ director
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