SECReT 2010 PhD projects
- Metal oxide semiconductor gas sensors as an electronic nose for the detection of microbial agents
- What are the factors that make communities vulnerable to, or resistant against, the emergence of radicalising settings?
- Covert taggant nanoparticle inks - discovery, process and product development, and analysis for sustainability and efficiency
- Diffusion processes of political violence: The role of information
- Engineering IT risk awareness, education and training
- Three-dimentional imaging of baggage for security applications.
- Understanding the traffic-driven epidemic spreading in scale-free networks
- Optimal search and detection of targets in an uncertain environment using unmanned aerial vehicle
- Explosive residue: Evaluation and optimisation of detection and sampling procedures
- Forecasting adversary’s scenarios: Systemic competitive red teaming
- Secure digital archive and web search using a Probably Approximately Correct architecture
- Mobilising community resilience through techno-social innovation
- Numerical modelling/empirical analysis of civil conflict
- Landmine, IED, UXO Detection using Ground Penetrating Radar from an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle
- Towards a usable and less disruptive security in the workplace
- Securing from exploits using information theoretical techniques
- Crime drop in Chile: Searching for causes and mechanisms
- Inferring user behaviour despite wireless network encryption
- The Chain of Evidence - a critical appraisal of the applicability and validity of forensic research and the usability of forensic evidence
The Chain of Evidence - a critical appraisal of the applicability and validity of forensic research and the usability of forensic evidence
8 May 2013
This research addresses the development and use of forensic evidence in two frames: forensic science research and the evidential value of forensic science in court. It is a critical study with the purpose of providing focus to both forensic research(ers) and the use(rs) of forensic evidence.
Forensic research should focus on applied techniques and underpinning data which, firstly can practically be used, are most prevalently used in criminal investigations and/or are most valuable in apprehending and successfully prosecuting the perpetrator. Vast amounts of resources are used in scientific research, criminal investigations and trials therefore these should, given these austere times, be spent wisely and with direction.
The first theme of this PhD focuses on forensic science research: the applicability and validity of forensic research are reviewed and analysed, using amongst others a case study of forensic anthropology research into the effects of fire modification of sharp force trauma in bone. The second theme will analyse the use of forensic evidence in the court room, by analysing the relationship between types of evidence and successful outcome (conviction and corresponding sentence length) to determine evidential value.
The goal of this PhD is to follow the chain of evidence: understand the logic of forensic science research, identify the shortcomings, and provide advice and guidance to those carrying out research, to ensure its applicability and validity. Complementary analysis of the use of forensic evidence in the prosecution of homicide cases in the UK will allow for evidential value of the various types of forensic evidence to be established within this category.
This will provide evidence to judiciary (and police) as to which types of (forensic) evidence are prevalent and which are most valuable in court. Collectively understanding the needs of the end users of forensic science has the potential of creating a demand and supply framework for directed forensic research. If resources are allocated to robust research, and methodological investigations and prosecutions, this will direct forensic research at a more dynamic pace to ensure efficient and effective use of evidence and manpower in criminal prosecution, ultimately saving time and money.