This research considers the relationship between science and the legal system. Scientists and engineers are often central actors in modern courtroom proceedings. Yet courts and attorneys often struggle with the relationship between science and law. This research uses extensive expert surveys to examine how experts view the legal system and their participation in it, and to provide insights on what can be done to improve the partnership between science and the legal system.
The surveys have yielded a wealth of findings, including evidence that most of the scientists and engineers are willing to participate in lawsuits. Nonetheless, they may refuse to participate when asked, not only because they lack the time, but also because they lack relevant expertise, thus revealing a frequent mismatch between requests and expertise. Some of the scientists and engineers report being uncomfortable with adversarial legal proceedings and indicate they would be more likely to participate in the future if procedural changes were made.