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Expertise in Regulation and Law

This collection of essays examines the multi-faceted roles of experts and expertise in and around contemporary legal and regulatory cultures. The essays illustrate the complexity intrinsic to the production and use of expert knowledge, particularly during transition from specialist communities to other domains such as policy formulation, regulatory standard setting and litigation. Several themes pervade the collection. These include the need to recognize that: expert knowledge and opinion is often complex, controversial and contested; there are no simple criteria for resolving disagreements between experts; appeals to 'objectivity' and 'impartiality' tend to be rhetorical rather than analytical; contests in expertise are frequently episodes in larger campaigns; there are many different models of expertise and knowledge; processes designed to deal with expert knowledge are unavoidably political; questions around who is an expert and what should count as expertise are not always self-evident; and the evidence rarely 'speaks for itself'.
Product Details

Table of Contents

Contents: Experts and expertise in legal and regulatory settings, Gary Edmond and David Mercer; Expertise and experience in the governance of science: what is public participation for?, Alan Irwin; Scientific expertise and regulatory decision-making: standards, evidential interpretation and social interests in the pharmaceutical sector, John Abraham; Protecting the environment at the margin: the role of economic analysis in regulatory design and decision-making, Marc A. Eisner. Hyper-experts and the vertical integration of expertise in EMF/RF litigation, David Mercer; Jackson Pollock, Judge Pollak, and the dilemma of fingerprint expertise, Simon A. Cole; 'Science above all else': the inversion of credibility between forensic DNA profiling and fingerprint evidence, Michael Lynch; Judging facts: managing expert knowledges in legal decision making, Gary Edmond; Narrative traditions of space, time and trust in court: terra nullis, 'wandering', the Yorta Yorta native title claim, and the Hindmarsh Island Bridge Controversy, David Turnbull; Ethical dimensions of law - science relations in US courtrooms, David S. Caudill; The invisible branch: the authority of science studies in expert evidence jurisprudence, Gary Edmond and David Mercer; Bibliography; Index.

About the Author

Gary Edmond is a senior lecturer in the Faculty of Law at the University of New South Wales, Australia. His research focuses on the relations between law and science, and expert evidence. He is particularly interested in mass torts, miscarriages of justice, the legal use of social science and humanities research in evidence as well as the public understanding of law. His original training was in history and philosophy of science and he holds a law degree from the University of Sydney and a PhD from the University of Cambridge. Contributors: Gary Edmond, David Mercer, Alan Irwin, John Abraham, Marc A. Eisner, Simon A. Cole, Michael Lynch, David Turnbull, David S. Caudill.


'By challenging simplistic understandings of the nature of scientific knowledge and method, this fascinating set of essays demonstrates the need for a more nuanced assessment of possibilities for 'evidence-based' law-making and dispute-resolution. It should be required reading for everyone involved in the creation and application of law and legal policy.' Professor Peter Cane, Australian National University, Australia 'This timely collection brings together leading authors who offer incisive and challenging studies of the various aspects of the field, taking full account of the importance of context and of the complexity of the relationship between expert and other domains. It should be required reading for all those with an interest in the relationship between expertise, regulation and law-and these days that must surely mean most of us.' Dr. John Paterson, University of Westminster, London, UK. 'This fine collection is a "must read" for anyone interested in experts and expertise in legal and regulatory settings. First rate analysts take us on a fascinating journey, using theories of expertise, conflict, institutional design, objectivity and knowledge to illuminate real-world settings that range from the public regulation of pharmaceuticals and the environment, through forensic evidence, to the role of experts and expertise in native title land claims.' Professor Jane Stapleton, The Australian National University, Australia 'This wide-ranging collection of essays makes a fascinating contribution to the literature on expertise. The contributors show how questions of expertise are more complex than is often assumed, and demonstrate intriguing parallels between law and other regulatory fields which utilise expert knowledge.' Dr Mike Redmayne, London School of Economics and Political Science, UK. 'Edmond has brought together an outstanding group of scholars to reflect on a fundamental rethinking of the jurisprudence of expert evidence. The debates are of particular importance to regulatory theory and policy. But for the whole of law, whether it is the expertise of chemistry or economics, expert evidence matters. The conversations captured in this book reframe our thinking with the insights of some of the finest experts on how to use experts.' John Braithwaite, The Australian National University, Australia ' excellent demonstration of the strong interrelationship among politics, social context, and decisions about what constitutes useful and valid expertise...will be most useful to legal scholars interested in standards of expert evidence...' The Law and Politics Book Review 'The essays in this book make a strong empirical case for the contextual and situated nature of knowledge in the legal and regulatory arena of practice.' Metascience

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