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Just Science: Just So You Know: AAFS Humanitarian and Human Rights Resource Center

NCJ Number
Douglas Ubelaker
Date Published
September 2019
1 page

This episode in the National Institute of Justice's (NIJ's) Just Science podcast series is an interview with Dr. Douglas Ubelaker, who describes the work of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences' (AAFS') Humanitarian and Human Rights Resource Center (HHRRC).


Background information for the interview notes that NIJ's Forensic Technology Center of Excellence (FTCoE), which sponsors the Just Science series, will help support key international agencies selected by the HHRRC to improve the practice of forensic science and strengthen its impact on humanitarian and human rights issues through training/education and the dissemination of best practices and guidelines for investigating human rights violations. Dr. Ubelaker is Chair of the HHRRC. He indicates that although individual members of the AAFS had participated in the application of forensic science practices in humanitarian and human rights projects prior to the creation of HHRRC, the HHRRC promotes and manages a more focused effort to improve the impacts of forensic science on investigations into potential human rights violations. The HHRRC has addressed the forensic issues of evidence preservation, training, research, and capacity-building throughout the world. Research discussed in this interview focuses on the identification of skeletal remains from the mass violence in Cambodia, development of the capacity of anthropology in Mexico, and how nerve agents are incorporated into bones.