Cass Business School | Groups
Faculty of Management Research Workshop; Beth Bechky, Stern, NYU

Tuesday, May 23
12:30pm – 2:00pm 
Cass Business School, 106 Bunhill Row

106 Bunhill Row, London EC1Y 8TZ, UK
Event Details


This presentation describes forensic scientists’ feelings about testifying, which reflect the underlying tensions created as they navigate the worlds of science and criminal justice simultaneously. While forensic scientists defined themselves as a scientific community, their work was evaluated with respect to its application in the criminal justice community. They struggled when confronted with the different norms of science and law, which led to some resentment of attorneys and ambivalence about their participation in the courtroom. More significantly, their identification as scientists (and with science) made them highly sensitive to the technical accuracy of their analysis, which often came into conflict with legal principles and practices for evidence. Moreover, as liminal members of the community of criminal justice, forensic scientists felt a sense of isolation and exclusion from the process of testifying. Understanding how these tensions manifested in the specter of testifying helps us to understand the evaluation of expertise and the influence of emotion in institutional processes.


Beth Bechky is the Jacob B. Melnick Term Professor of Management and Organizations at the Stern School of Business and a professor of Sociology (by courtesy) at New York University. Her research on the dynamics of work at organizational and occupational boundaries has appeared in journals such as Administrative Science Quarterly, American Journal of Sociology, Academy of Management Journal and Organization Science. She is a former senior editor at Organization Science and editor of Qualitative Organizational Research. Prior to joining NYU she held professorial positions at the Graduate School of Management at the University of California, Davis and the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

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Where & When

Cass Business School, 106 Bunhill Row
3003, 106 Bunhill Row, London EC1Y 8TZ, UK

Tuesday, May 23, 12:30pm – 2:00pm

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