Iowa State University has announced that statisticians and forensic scientists across the country will keep working to put statistics behind the pattern evidence found in bloodstains and fingerprints and the digital evidence found in phones and computers. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has renewed support for the Center for Statistics and Applications in Forensic Evidence based at Iowa State University for another five years and up to $20 million. The renewal is effective June 1.
NIST established the center, known as CSAFE, as a Forensic Science Center of Excellence in 2015 with an original five-year grant of up to $20 million. It began as a partnership of Iowa State, Carnegie Mellon University in Pennsylvania, the University of California, Irvine and the University of Virginia.
The center has grown to include more than 60 researchers from the four original universities and two others, Duke University in North Carolina and West Virginia University.
The center’s mission includes building “a statistically sound and scientifically solid foundation for the analysis and interpretation of forensic evidence.” The center’s researchers are also working to grow competence in the forensic and legal communities and to offer education and training.