Advancing Research and Collaborative Research Partnerships in Forensic Science

Advancing Research and Collaborative Research Partnerships in Forensic Science

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This webinar originally occurred on November 14, 2023
Duration: 1 hour


With the ever-increasing volume of evidence being submitted to forensic laboratories coupled with the growing demand for new capabilities to provide additional contextual information to support criminal investigations, fostering strong collaborative partnerships between forensic science laboratories and universities are not just beneficial, but rather they are essential. The synergistic relationship combines the technical and operational expertise of the laboratory scientists with the expert knowledge of research design and statistics from university researchers. Beyond the expansion of the skills and talent of this team, there are functional benefits for each party as well. Laboratories may have research ideas or identified gaps but may lack the personnel support to address these challenges, fortunately universities have students and interns looking for real-world experience, along with researchers eager to conduct impactful research that will be transitioned into forensic operations. 

While all laboratories understand the critical importance of research and research partnerships, not all laboratories are participating in research or have established collaborations with universities. This may be due to factors such as a lack of awareness regarding potential research partners or projects. Alternatively, it could stem from not understanding how to form partnerships or appropriately share data between collaborators. Perhaps leaders are not aware of successful partnerships and are looking for an example to model for creating their own partnership. 

This webinar aims to provide vital information to forensic laboratories and universities that are interested in establishing research partnerships. The session will start with a review of data-sharing agreements and their importance in collaboration. The next topic will highlight research partnerships, outlining ways individuals and organizations can collaborate on research projects. The final topic will explore a successful research partnership between a forensic laboratory and a university, providing valuable insights on the best practices for research collaborations. With the knowledge gained from this webinar, attendees will be armed with the tools to be able to form successful and collaborative research partnerships, advancing forensic science and enhancing the criminal justice system’s impactful contributions to society.

Detailed Learning Objectives

  1. Attendees will learn about data sharing agreements and their importance for establishing and maintaining successful research partnerships. 
  2. Attendees will learn about tools and initiatives that will help them identify, develop, and support research and research collaborations
  3. Attendees will explore a successful laboratory and university research partnership with key insights from the perspective of forensic scientists and university researchers. 


  • Ray Wickenheiser | Director, New York State Police Crime Laboratory System
  • Ashley Hall, Ph.D. | Director, Forensic Science Graduate Program at the University of California Davis
  • Henry Maynard, M.S. | ASCLD Forensic Research Committee Chair
  • Mike Marciano, Ph.D. | Professor of Practice and Director of Forensics Research, Syracuse University Forensics and National Security Sciences Institute

Funding for this Forensic Technology Center of Excellence webinar has been provided by the National Institute of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice.

The opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this webinar are those of the presenter(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Department of Justice.

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