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Facial comparison in South Africa and the world: Current status and a way forward

When: Monday, 29 May 2023
Stibbe Dissection Hall, Room 2A01 2nd Floor, Wits Medical School, 7 York Road, Parktown
Start time:14:00

Dr Nicholas Bacci


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In-person RSVP Facial comparison in South Africa and the world: Current status and a way forward (

Presented by Dr Nicholas Bacci

This public lecture will allow the interested academic community and greater public to have an insight into the world of facial comparison and its applications. The lecture will focus on recent studies validating it for use in a

forensic setting and the future directions of the field.

All interested parties are welcome.

About Nicholas Bacci:
Dr Nicholas Bacci is a Lecturer under the Morphological Anatomy Division in the School of Anatomical Sciences, at Wits University.
He is also a part of the Human Variation and Identification Research Unit. He holds a PhD in Anatomy, in the field of craniofacial identification, specialising in facial comparison, and morphological analysis. While trained broadly in anatomy, biological anthropology and bone histology, his primary focus is on forensic applications. He originally conducted research on the effects of high impulse currents to animal and human bone, as well as testing the efficacy of the use of the sternum as a tool for age estimation. He also has been involved in a series of medical and forensic case studies of skeletal and cadaveric nature.
Through his PhD work and current research, he published a series of manuscripts testing and validating forensic facial comparison. As part of this work, he has collaboratively established the Wits Face Database, the first large-scale matched, high-resolution photograph and multimodal CCTV recording database involving male African participants. He is actively involved in further research in craniofacial identification, high energy skeletal diagenesis (including thermal and electrical), as well as anatomical terminology.
He is a member of the American Association of Biological Anthropologists (AABA), Charted Society of Forensic Sciences (CSFS), International Association of Craniofacial Identification (IACI), and the Anatomical Association of Southern Africa (ASSA) and currently serves on the ASSA terminology committee.


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