Awareness As a First Step Toward Overcoming Implicit Bias

Enhancing Justice: Reducing Bias 289 (Sarah Redfiled et al. eds., 2017)

GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 2017-56

GWU Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2017-56

15 Pages Posted: 1 Aug 2017

See all articles by Cynthia Lee

Cynthia Lee

George Washington University Law School

Date Written: 2017

Abstract

In this book chapter, Cynthia Lee explains that raising awareness of implicit bias is a necessary first step toward eliminating such bias. Lee discusses various ways legal actors can raise awareness about implicit bias, including implicit bias trainings and jury instructions attempting to educate jurors about implicit bias. She concludes that making racial bias (or other types of bias) salient is probably the most effective way to raise awareness of implicit bias in the courtroom setting and discusses the social science literature that supports this conclusion. In light of some studies suggesting that making bias salient may backfire, she suggests that making bias salient may be more effective in certain environments where the decision maker has sufficient time to deliberate, such as jury deliberations, as opposed to other environments where the decision maker has little time to deliberate and has to make a quick decision.

Keywords: implicit bias, racial bias, race, racial stereotyping, jury instructions

Suggested Citation

Lee, Cynthia, Awareness As a First Step Toward Overcoming Implicit Bias (2017). Enhancing Justice: Reducing Bias 289 (Sarah Redfiled et al. eds., 2017), GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 2017-56, GWU Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2017-56, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3011381 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3011381

Cynthia Lee (Contact Author)

George Washington University Law School ( email )

2000 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20052
United States
(202) 994-4768 (Phone)

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