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Prof. Marjan J. Sjerps

Special chair in Forensic Statistics

Marjan Sjerps
Marjan Sjerps

Short Biography

Marjan Sjerps received her master degree in mathematics (specialization in statistics/OR) from the Catholic University of Nijmegen, the Netherlands (currently Radboud University Nijmegen) in 1988. She obtained her PhD in 1994 from Leiden University, the Netherlands, based on a dissertation concerning theoretical biology.

In 1993 she started working at the Netherlands Forensic Institute (NFI) as a statistician, where she became involved in the emerging area of forensic statistics. Her activities include forensic statistics casework, teaching, consultation, and research. She acted as an expert witness in court on several occasions. Currently, she is employed as principal scientist at the NFI, and is a member of a team of forensic statisticians and a team of principal scientists.

She was appointed professor by special appointment at the University of Amsterdam in February 2010, which was extended in 2015. Her research interests are interpretation, evaluation and reporting of forensic evidence: all aspects of probabilistic reasoning in the forensic process, from gathering evidence up to testifying in court.

She published over 65 papers in (semi) scientific journals (national and international) and was editor of a book on statistics in law (in Dutch).

Key Publications

  • Zoete J de, Sjerps M, Lagnado D, Fenton N (2015) Modelling crime linkage with Bayesian networks Science & Justice, 55: 209-217.
  • Kloosterman A, Sjerps M, Quak A (2014) Error rates in forensic DNA analysis: Definition, numbers, impact and communication,  Forensic Science International: Genetics 12, 77–85.
  • M. Sjerps and  R. Meester (2009) Selection effects and database screening in forensic science, Forensic Science International 192 (2009) 56–61.