What is "scientific knowledge" and when is it reliable? These deceptively simple questions have been the source of endless controversy. In 1993, the Supreme Court handed down a landmark ruling on the use of scientific evidence in federal courts. Federal judges may admit expert scientific evidence only if it merits the label "scientific knowledge." The testimony must be scientifically "reliable" and "valid."This book is organized around the criteria set out in the 1993 ruling.
Phantom risks are risks whose very existence is unproven and perhaps unprovable, yet they raise real problems at the interface of science and the law. Phantom Risk surveys a dozen scientific issues that have led to public controversy and litigation - among them, miscarriage from the use of video display terminals, birth defects in children whose mothers used the drug Bendectin, and cancer from low-intensity magnetic fields, and from airborne asbestos.