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In 2016, the Isaac Newton Institute for Mathematical Sciences (INI) ran a six month Research Programme on Probability and Statistics in Forensic Science. The Programme aimed to try to tackle the problems around the rudimentary and often flawed way that probative value of forensic evidence is presented in Courts. In particular, where probative value is presented in probabilistic and statistical terms there have been numerous instances of misunderstanding leading to miscarriages of justice. 

Set against this backdrop, the Gateway arranged a pre-Programme consultation in February 2016, with legal practitioners (Judges, QC’s, and Barristers) and academic experts to inform the Programme. This meeting clearly highlighted the need for a consensus as to the uses and limitations of statistics and probability in criminal evidence and how these should be expressed in Court.  This was followed later in the year (December 2016) by a full-day Open for Business dissemination event supported by the Criminal Bar Association.