Novel Shifts in Memory Research and their Impact on the Legal Process: Introduction to the Special Issue on Memory Formation and Suggestibility in the Legal Process


Correspondence to: Henry Otgaar, Ph.D., Forensic Psychology section, Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience, Maastricht University, Maastricht, the Netherlands. E-mail:


The functioning and frailties of memory are frequently at the centerpiece of much expert testimony about the reliability of eyewitness accounts. Although we have much knowledge about how false memories and suggestibility can affect testimonies, the contributions in this special issue show that when using a sound theoretical framework, novel directions in this field can surface. The papers in this issue can broadly be divided into contributions that are related to: (1) the exact determinants of false memory and suggestibility; (2) new paradigms in legal psychology; (3) positive consequences of memory illusions; and (4) developmental false memory research. Collectively, these contributions have the potential to provide novel shifts in memory research and push this field beyond its current boundaries. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.