This episode two of the Improving the System season of the National Institute of Justice's (NIJ's) Just Science podcast series is an interview with Garry LaPorte, former Director of the Office of Investigative and Forensic Sciences at NIJ, who discusses forensic science research and development innovations.
Over the course of his career, LaPorte has worked with agencies across multiple disciplines on varied high-profile cases. This interview reflects the diversity of his professional knowledge and experience, as he discusses the value of statistics, the definition of light, and his experience in working as Chief Forensic Chemist with the Secret Service. The interview includes comments on the importance of his work as Director of the Office of Investigative and Forensic Sciences at NIJ. He notes that NIJ is the major agency in the country for forensic science research funding and technical assistance. One of the challenges at NIJ is the development and use of new technologies that must be tested to ensure they produce accurate results. NIJ has also featured the introduction of statistical analysis as a tool for measuring the validity of specific forensic lab results. NIJ is also involved in the efforts to make testimony by forensic scientists understandable to laypersons on juries.