Michael Spezio Reviews New Book on the Automation of Incarceration

Associate Professor of Psychology Michael Spezio reviewed Just Algorithms, Christopher Slobogin’s book on the automation of criminal sentencing, for Science magazine. Although Spezio hails the book for its consideration of legal and scientific considerations, he notes that Slobogin’s argument falls short in other key ways: “Ultimately . . . the book does little to allay concerns about the inherent potential of algorithms to perpetuate racial discrimination in criminal sentencing,” Spezio writes, primarily because the author minimizes the role systemic racism plays in implicating people in violent crimes. “Biased data will always result in processes that are resistant to attempts to achieve algorithmic fairness.”