The Forensic Science Society and California Association of Criminalists joint Autumn conference, AGM 2013 & awards dinner will take place on 6 – 8 November 2013 at The Mercure Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester, United Kingdom.
This conference provides a unique opportunity for those active in the field of human identification methods (DNA, fingerprints and biometrics), to network with & to showcase their work to stakeholders including the police, academia, forensic science providers, research councils and government facilities.
Aim: To address the alignment of forensic science research and development with the needs of the justice system, particularly the enhancement of public safety. The recovery & provision of scientific evidence is crucial and as such the conference will:
- Tackle some of the on-going issues and irritations through facilitated debate
- Demonstrate the value of forensic science in the investigative process.
- Identify gaps and new opportunities for applied research in the UK and internationally.
Call for Papers/Posters
There will be eight themes covering areas such as Crime Scene, Digital Identity, DNA, Fingerprints, Biometrics, Human Identity, Quality and a catch all theme entitled R&D I just wish (a chance to air your views on something which has been bugging you for years.) Delegates are invited to submit their work for either an oral presentation or poster presentation.
Late submissions may be submitted. The Science Committee will review the scientific content of each submission to ensure they meet the overall aim and theme of the conference.
The Forensic Science Special Interest Group will be leading their own theme during the conference entitled “How to take forensic science research to market. For more information on this session, please click here.
The examination of a scene is so much more than …”see-it, bag-it, tag-it”… The Crime Scene Investigator needs suitable recording and recovery techniques as well as effective packaging materials. Innovative research and development to address these issues including the range of contact traces and other materials dealt with and the evaluation and interpretation of scientific evidence, is needed.
Papers addressing all aspects of computational or pattern recognition based biometrics are sought including: face recognition, iris recognition, ear recognition, vein pattern recognition, speaker recognition, gait recognition, and multimodal or other biometric technologies relevant to forensic science; automated recognition of clothing or ‘logos’; approaches to measurement from images; computational behaviour recognition; novel computational approaches to dermatoglyphic or other print comparison; statistical methods relevant to individual identification; manual, semi-automated and automated anthropometric approaches to individual identification from images; methods for biometric /image database acquisition and searching; as well as investigative management systems for CCTV image evidence.
The DNA element of the conference will focus on novel scientific advances in the field including:
- DNA for identification
- Intelligence uses of DNA
- Epigenetics & ways to enhance the contextual usefulness of DNA evidence
- Advances in DNA interpretation
In addition to novel scientific advances, we will review areas of controversy, including court challenges, error rates and contamination issues, concentrating on tools and techniques to enhance performance.
Over the last 20 years there have been considerable advances in techniques for identifying unknown human remains that are in an advanced state of composition/skeletalisation. These approaches have been successfully applied to both criminal cases and the identification of war dead, including remains from First World war and subsequent 20th century conflicts.
Advances in DNA technology have improved the final phase of identification where comparisons can be made between profiles recovered from the deceased and surviving family members. However a number of other techniques, including physical anthropology, cranio-facial reconstruction, reconstruction of degraded clothing and personal effects and stable light isotope and radiogenic isotope analysis, have been used to narrow down the number of potential comparisons needed for DNA analysis.
Case studies are sought that will demonstrate utility in both criminal casework and identification of war dead.
Digital & Electronic Forensics (e-forensics) are a major part of 21st century policing and research and development is key to addressing the exponential change and growth in technology to maintain operational and investigative capability.
The Digital Forensic theme will cover: data recovery from computers, mobile devices (Smartphones & Tablets), Smart devices (Smart TVs & Smart meters) and vehicle electronics, and analysis and interpretation of Video, Audio and Cell Site data. Papers are sought in all of the above areas.
Given the many changes which have taken place in the forensic arena the issue of quality is at the forefront of many minds. Police forces are looking at in-house provision but it is imperative that this is carried out in accordance with appropriate quality standards.
Emphasis on tighter budgets and value for money may impact resources, but where quality is concerned the question is “can you afford not to do it?”
Fingerprints as a means of human identification have long made a valuable contribution to the Criminal Justice System. However, in recent years the discipline has been the focus of some high profile reviews which have increased the appetite for research and development activity throughout the fingerprint profession.
The conference extends an opportunity for the submission of papers relating to the theme and particularly in areas such as cognitive influence and the subjective nature of fingerprint identification as well as the application of statistical reasoning to fingerprint identification.
R&D — I just wish
For many years we have looked to innovators to stretch the boundaries of science and technology to bring forward fresh ideas and new technologies that help us improve the way we deal with criminality. The current environment requires us to look even further across all sectors and disciplines to develop and enhance our approach to the application of science in the courts.
This theme is focussed on considering the problems and opportunities that need a fresh approach, and looking to harvest innovation that will bring a step change to the way we apply forensic science. Examples of this category ‘I just wish we could’ are
- Easily visualise and recover evidence from crime scenes
- Transmit information quickly for analysis
- Speed up and improve the analysis and interpretation of evidence
- Fuse information from evidence types together
We are looking for novel approaches and innovative ideas to be surfaced and discussed between scientists and end users that can bridge the gap between aspiration and application.