Providing expert knowledge in an adversarial context: Social cognitive science in employment discrimination cases

Susan T. Fiske, Eugene Borgida

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Scopus citations

Abstract

Quality science provides the foundation for expert testimony in court, a claim illustrated here by three established principles of social cognition frequently applied to litigation in employment discrimination cases. First, dual processes, automatic and controlled, underlie "hidden" bias. The Implicit Association Test exemplifies one controversial but scientifically tractable application of such automaticity principles. Second, encoding and attention reveal incredibly early bias. Their potential application via neuroscience in the courtroom will challenge both science and the law. Third, mental construal produces categorical representation. Legal applications show categories' tenacity despite commonsense expectations about the impact of individuating information. Psychological scientists, expert witnesses, legal scholars, legal practitioners, and organizational managers each benefit when quality science is imported into legal contexts. Normal science disagreements should not mistakenly tarnish the credibility of quality science.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)123-148
Number of pages26
JournalAnnual Review of Law and Social Science
Volume4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 22 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Law

Keywords

  • Bias
  • Organizations
  • Prejudice
  • Psychology
  • Scientific testimony

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Providing expert knowledge in an adversarial context: Social cognitive science in employment discrimination cases'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this