The Interpreter’s Task in Expert Testimony in Criminal Cases

The aim of the research project is to formulate the job specifications for interpreters who assist in the compilation of psychological or psychiatric expert opinion in criminal proceedings. Hence the project undertakes to bring the various considerations and requirements of the disciplines involved—forensic psychology, psychiatry, jurisprudence, and translation studies—into alignment. The task of the interpreter in criminal proceedings is a research area that has attracted relatively little interdisciplinary research to date. Furthermore, the expert opinion—in whose preparation the interpreter takes part—is very often of decisive importance for the judicial rulings made (for example, concerning the guilt of the accused) in criminal cases. The skills that an interpreter can be expected to possess will be determined on the basis of a comprehensive empirical analysis of the interaction “Exploration.” The actions of the others involved in the interaction, who are “in favor of” or “against” the settlement, should not, however, be neglected.

Term of Project: 2006-2007
Research endowment fund 2006

Project Members:
Prof. Barbara Ahrens (Translation Studies, Cologne University of Applied Sciences)
Prof. Dieter Huber (General and Applied Linguistics)