"We aim to provide a forum whereby problems in policing can be aired and ways found to overcome them. We will do this by involving local and national agencies in the running of the Institute and by focussing on problem areas identified to us by the police service."
The ways in which forensic work is carried out is currently going through a period of change, with much work now contracted out to private companies - but staff at the University of Leicester hope the new Institute will be able to help police forces with unusual requests.
Dr Bond said: "What we do want to offer is the ability to consult on unusual cases or pieces of evidence. A recent example was a request made to the University to oversee the analysis of evidence from a 80-year-old murder case as the University was seen to have specific skills in that area."
Dr Smith said: "This new Institute is unique in its multidisciplinary approach to forensic science and criminal justice services. By bringing together the various disciplines at the University (who traditionally work separately from one another), we will be able to provide the Criminal Justice System with a wider range of expert consultancy, research and innovation, teaching and continuing professional development."
It is hoped existing forensic science courses, including the new distance learning MSc in Forensic Science and Criminal Justice, will be run from the new Institute.
The institute will be formally launched at the University on Monday 19 November in the presence of the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir Robert Burgess and Professor Sir Alec Jeffreys.
|Contact: Dr. John Bond|
University of Leicester