University of Southern California

Defending Data

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Article by Pamela Metzger & Andrew Guthrie Ferguson
From Volume 88, Number 5 (July, 2015)

88 S. Cal. L. Rev. 1057

Defending Data proposes a data-driven, systems-based approach to improving public defense in America. Public defenders represent millions of defendants every year. Yet public defense remains a largely data-less enterprise, a black box of discretionary decisions disconnected from any systemic analysis about the relationship between defender practices and case outcomes. Defending Data adopts a novel approach to the crisis of public defense. Building off of the successful implementation of system-based approaches in other complex, high-risk industries such as aviation and medicine, Defending Data explains how defenders can develop a data-driven systems approach to public defense.

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