I am an Assistant Professor at the University of Pennsylvania in the Criminology Department. My PhD is in Statistics and Public Policy from Carnegie Mellon University. My training is primarily in statistics and data science.
For my dissertation, I worked with Stephen Fienberg and Edward Kennedy on causal inference in forensics. My work is driven by interdisciplinary projects in which I use statistics and data science to study problems in public policy, forensics, and human rights.
I currently research causation in legal contexts by using the Causes of Effects and Effects of Causes framework. I have applied this framework to evaluate the use of scientific evidence by expert witnesses in cases of Shaken Baby Syndrome. For my dissertation, I developed a novel influence-function-based method to estimate the probability of causation, which allows for nonparametric estimation of the nuisance functions and still provides confidence intervals under weak structural assumptions. On these issues, I work with the Penn Center for Causal Inference.
I also research the validity of statistical statements in forensic analysis. I am interested in how contextual information about a case influences a forensic examiner’s decision, such as whether two bullet cartridges were fired by the same firearm. I am also interested in evaluating the foundational validity of toolmark analysis, in which examiners determine whether two marks made by a tool, such as a screwdriver, were made by the same tool. On these issues, I work with the Center for Statistics and Applications in Forensic Evidence (CSAFE) and the Quattrone Center for the Fair Administration of Justice.
Last updated: July 1, 2018.