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Revolutionizing Laboratory Efficiency Assessments Through Project FORESIGHT

NCJ Number
Date Published
March 2020
6 pages

This report on Project FORESIGHT - an effort to develop a model that will enable crime laboratories to conduct a self-evaluation of their efficiency and effectiveness - reviews the project's history, features of the model developed, lessons learned from its trial in two crime laboratories, and future plans.


In 2009, Dr. Paul Speaker, a finance professor at West Virginia University, envisioned the development of a model that crime laboratories could use to identify and address laboratory inefficiencies. With funding support from the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), Dr. Speaker helped launch Project FORESIGHT, which enables crime laboratories to measure their internal work processes and compare them with those of similar crime laboratories nationwide. Project FORESIGHT is a business-oriented self-evaluation that provides laboratory managers with actionable insights into the performance of their laboratory. The current report presents the standardized terminology and metrics of the model. Project FORESUGHT is soliciting the participation of crime laboratories throughout the country, which will use the self-evaluation model and compare their experiences with other participating similar labs across the country. The project envisions identifying and facilitating the adoption of best practices for the management of various types of crime laboratories. The current report describes the impact of and lessons learned from the use of the FORESIGHT self-evaluation model by two participating crime laboratories. In 2019, about 139 laboratories were participating in the project. The ongoing improvement in the project is also discussed. 9 resource listings

Date Published: March 1, 2020