Ethics and Professionalism in Forensic Anthropology - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780128120651

Ethics and Professionalism in Forensic Anthropology

1st Edition

Authors: Nicholas Passalacqua Marin A. Pilloud
Paperback ISBN: 9780128120651
Imprint: Academic Press
Published Date: 1st June 2018
Page Count: 120
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Ethics and Professionalism in Forensic Anthropology will the serve as the first major discussion of ethics and professionalism within the field of forensic anthropology. While there have been some publications on ethics within forensic anthropology (e.g., Walsh-Haney and Lieberman 2005; France 2012; Passalacqua, Pilloud, and Gruters 2014), they are limited in scope and reach. The primary aims for this text is that it will serve not just as a general discussion of ethics, ethical guidelines, and how to act in an ethical and professional matter, all things which are seriously lacking in forensic anthropology, but that it will act as a reference volume for how to deal with ethically challenging scenarios for professionals. Finally, the hope is that this volume sets the stage for further discussions of ethics and professionalism within forensic anthropology, as well as biological anthropology and the forensic sciences generally.

While there are several volumes that deal with ethics in the forensic sciences in general (e.g., Barnett 2001; Bowen 2009; Upshaw Downs and Ranadive Swienton 2012), and one that deals with ethics in biological anthropology (Turner 2005), there is no volume that deals specifically with ethics in forensic anthropology; creating a large gap in the literature, which the authors aim to fill with this volume. As the forensic sciences in general attempt to organize and professionalize their disciplines after the 2009 NAS report, discussions of ethics and qualifications within each subdiscipline are needed.

Key Features

  • Asseses the need for professional ethics
  • Current ethical guidelines applicable to forensic anthropologists and their means of enforcement
  • Different approaches to professionalism within the context of forensic anthropology, including issues of scientific integrity, qualifications, accreditation and quality assurance
  • The use of human subjects and human remains in forensic anthropology research
  • Ethical and legal issues surrounding forensic anthropological casework, including: analytical notes, case reports, peer review, incidental findings, and testimony
  • Harassment and discrimination in science, anthropology, and forensic anthropology


Practicing forensic anthropologists, upper-level undergraduate and graduate students in forensic anthropology. Bioarchaologists, forensic pathologists, death investigators, and bio-ethicists

Table of Contents

1. Introduction
2. Current Ethical Guidelines and Means of Enforcement
3. Need for Professional Ethics
4. Defining the Role of the Forensic Anthropologist
5. Treatment of the Deceased
6. Research in Forensic Anthropology
7. Case work
8. Publications and Grants
9. Harassment and Discrimination
10. Ethical Dilemmas and Potential Resolutions
11. Conclusions


No. of pages:
© Academic Press 2018
Academic Press
Paperback ISBN:

About the Author

Nicholas Passalacqua

Dr. Passalacqua is an Assistant Professor and the Forensic Anthropology Program Coordinator at Western Carolina University. Prior to arriving at WCU Dr. Passalacqua worked as a deploying forensic anthropologist with the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency - Laboratory. Nicholas received his Ph.D. in Anthropology from Michigan State in 2012; and was certified by the American Board of Forensic Anthropology in 2016. Dr. Passalacqua is a co-founder and the current Editor-in-Chief of the journal Forensic Anthropology. His research interests include age at death estimation, skeletal trauma analysis, and ethics. Dr. Passalacqua is also a co-author of the award-winning textbook: Forensic Anthropology: Current Methods and Practice, as well as numerous publications in such journals as: The Journal of Forensic Sciences, The International Journal of Osteoarchaeology, and The American Journal of Physical Anthropology, as well as chapters in such books as: Skeletal trauma analysis: Case studies in context, The analysis of burned human remains, Age estimation of the human skeleton, and A companion to forensic anthropology.

Affiliations and Expertise

POW/MIA Accounting Command's Central Identification Laboratory, HI, USA

Marin A. Pilloud

Marin A. Pilloud, PhD, RPA, D-ABFA is currently an assistant professor of anthropology at the University of Nevada, Reno. Dr. Pilloud’s research is broadly focused on the application of dental morphology and metrics to answering research questions in both bioarchaeology and forensic anthropology. She has active bioarchaeological research programs in Neolithic Anatolia and prehistoric California, and within forensic anthropology she is interested in the use of teeth in the estimation of ancestry.

Affiliations and Expertise

PhD, D-ABFA University of Nevada, Reno, NV, USA