Faculty Publications


FORESIGHT: A business approach to improving forensic science services.

SelectedWorks Author Profiles:

Max M. Houck

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Managers of scientific laboratories see themselves as scientists first and managers second; consequently, they tend to devalue the managerial aspects of their jobs. Forensic laboratory managers are no different, but the stakes may be much higher given the importance of quality science to the criminal justice system. The need for training and support in forensic laboratory management has been recognized for many years, but little has been done to transition the tools of business to the forensic laboratory environment. FORESIGHT is a business-guided self-evaluation of forensic science laboratories across North America. The participating laboratories represent local, regional, state, and national agencies. Economics, accounting, finance, and forensic faculty provide assistance, guidance, and analysis. The process involves standardizing definitions for metrics to evaluate work processes, linking financial information to work tasks, and functions. Laboratory managers can then assess resource allocations, efficiencies, and value of services—the mission is to measure, preserve what works, and change what does not. A project of this magnitude for forensic laboratories has not been carried out anywhere.


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Taylor & Francis