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Aaron Amankwaa

Senior Lecturer

Department: Applied Sciences

Aaron is a Forensic Science Researcher with an academic background in forensic biology and forensic DNA legislation. He holds a BSc in Biochemistry (2013) from KNUST, Ghana; an MSc in Forensic Science (2015) from the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow (funded by the Commonwealth Shared Scholarship); and a Law PhD on Forensic DNA databases (2019) from Northumbria University (funded by Northumbria Research Studentship). Aaron joined Northumbria University as a Senior Lecturer in Forensic Science after completing his PhD in 2019. He worked previously as a Teaching and Laboratory Assistant (National Service Person) in Biochemistry at KNUST, Ghana, from 2013 to 2014. Aaron is an Associate Member of the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences (CSFS) (since 2016).

Through his research, Aaron has contributed oral and written evidence and reviewed policy reports on forensic biometrics for several groups and agencies including the Scottish Independent Advisory Group on Biometrics, Forensic Genetics Policy Initiative, the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology and the New Zealand Law Commission. He has also worked on Northumbria Police commissioned evaluations on out of court disposals.

Aaron Amankwaa


  • Law PhD December 03 2019
  • Science MSc November 12 2015
  • Biochemistry BSc (Hons) June 14 2013

Research Themes and Scholarly Interests

Aaron's research is multi- and inter-disciplinary, spanning forensic science, law, and policing, with a clear policy-impact focus. His primary research covers three key themes: 1) evaluation of the effectiveness of forensic DNA databases, forensic biometrics and other forensic applications (including AI and machine learning technologies); 2) development of forensic genetic testing, with a focus on increasing DNA yield and determining the age of biological evidence; 3) development and evaluation of crime reduction initiatives.

Key Publications

  • Please visit the Pure Research Information Portal for further information
  • Forensic Science in Ghana, Amankwaa, A., Nsiah Amoako, E., Mensah Bonsu, D., Banyeh, M. 2019, In: Forensic Science International: Synergy
  • Towards a reformed policy for immigrant DNA tests, a commentary, Amankwaa, A. 1 Aug 2019, In: Journal of Forensic and Legal Medicine
  • Trends in forensic DNA database: transnational exchange of DNA data, Amankwaa, A. 7 Feb 2019, In: Forensic Sciences Research
  • Forensic DNA retention: Public perspective studies in the United Kingdom and around the world, Amankwaa, A. 1 Nov 2018, In: Science & Justice
  • The UK National DNA Database, Amankwaa, A., McCartney, C. 1 Mar 2018, In: Forensic Science International


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