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The Fingerprint Sourcebook

The idea of The Fingerprint Sourcebook originated during a meeting in April 2002. Individuals representing the fingerprint, academic, and scientific communities met in Chicago, Illinois, for a day and a half to discuss the state of fingerprint identification with a view toward the challenges raised by Daubert issues. The meeting was a joint project between the International Association for Identification (IAI) and West Virginia University (WVU). One recommendation that came out of that meeting was a suggestion to create a sourcebook for friction ridge examiners, that is, a single source of researched information regarding the subject. This sourcebook would provide educational, training, and research information for the international scientific community. The Scientific Working Group on Friction Ridge Analysis, Study and Technology (SWGFAST) prepared an outline of the subjects that should be included in the sourcebook. Charles Illsley, a SWGFAST member, prepared a grant proposal for submission to the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) for funding of the project, with Frank Fitzpatrick as the project director and Alan and Debbie McRoberts as the sourcebook editors. Although many participants in the project were, and some remain, active members of SWGFAST, participation in the project was not restricted to SWGFAST members. NIJ provided grant funding to the WVU Forensic Science Initiative to support the project and a call for authors and reviewers was extended throughout the forensic community. The prospective authors were asked to prepare a detailed outline and an introduction (approximately 250 to 750 words) for each chapter that they hoped to write. They were also asked to provide a curriculum vitae. Two or more individuals volunteered for most chapters and some chapters had as many as seven volunteers. Reviewers critiqued the introductions and outlines for the various chapters, and Frank Fitzpatrick and I made the final selection of chapter authors. Multiple reviewers for each chapter participated and are listed at the end of each chapter. The curricula vitae for all of the authors and most reviewers are included in the appendix.
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