Crime and punishment occur under extreme uncertainty. Offenders, victims, police officers, prosecutors, witnesses, judges, and jurors all make high-stakes decisions with limited information, often under severe time pressure. Stereotypes loom large under such conditions, and affect the workings of the justice system through insidious, pervasive, and sometimes surprising paths. In this SFI Community Lecture, economist Rajiv Sethi shows how deeply stereotypes are implicated in the most controversial criminal justice issues of our time, and how a clearer understanding of their effects can guide us toward a more just society.
Rajiv Sethi is a Professor of Economics at Barnard College, Columbia University and an External Professor at the Santa Fe Institute. He has previously held visiting positions at Microsoft Research in New York City, and at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. He is on the editorial boards of the American Economic Review and Economics and Philosophy. His research deals primarily with information and beliefs, and he is a co-author of Shadows of Doubt: Stereotypes, Crime, and the Pursuit of Justice, published by Harvard University Press in 2019.
Watch the video:
Listen to Rajiv Sethi's interview with Mary Charlotte Domandi on Radio Cafe (August 15, 2019)
Listen to Rajiv Sethi's interview with Tom Towbridge on KSFR (August 16, 2019)