Beware of Pseudo-science

Any scientific method is only truly valid as long as the outcome can be repeated and verified by others. This is the basic test of validity in scientific methodology. This process requires that all data, methods and analysis be properly documented for peer scrutiny.

While there are some excellent forensic engineers in the accident reconstruction profession, the practice of pseudo-science is also common. A pseudo-scientist is one who hides behind the influential title of a forensic engineer but has flawed practices. Pseudo-scientists reference and apply scientific literature in a vague and confusing manner that is difficult to decipher from valid scientific methodology. They rely on the fact that their vague and confusing approach would hinder the legal professional from asking them specific questions. In order to ask  detailed and technical questions a lawyer must be adequately equipped with knowledge of valid results, proper methodology and relevant publications.

One of the services offered at Intech Engineering is the technical review of other “expert” reports. This is perhaps one of our most underutilized services, and yet has proven to be one of the most valuable. The results of our technical reviews, allow legal professionals to know the true facts in advance; it also assists in deciphering the flaws in a pseudo-scientific report. This process permits the legal professional to effectively prepare scientifically valid questions for the pseudo-scientist and confidently challenge their theories and conclusions. In short, legal professionals should always know the facts, before they ask the questions.

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