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Carina Hahn (Fed)

Social Scientist

Carina Hahn is a Social Scientist in NIST's Information Technology Laboratory. With a Ph.D. in Cognition and Neuroscience from the University of Texas at Dallas, Carina's research is centered around facial forensic expertise, where she works to understand this specialized type of facial recognition ability. The work in facial recognition earned a team Gold Medal from the US Department of Commerce - the highest honor granted by the Secretary. As part of NIST’s Explainable AI Team, she contributed to characterizing the properties of explainable artificial intelligence, focusing on considering the human aspects of this human-machine collaboration.  

On detail as a Statistical Research Analyst in NIST's Diversity, Equity, and Inclusivity Office,  she analyzed and reported on workforce data, co-led DEIA implementation teams, and contributed to the goals and vision of the office.

Her multidisciplinary research is published in high-impact, peer-reviewed journals such as Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Proceedings of the Royal Society, and ACM SIGGRAPH.

Spotlight: Measuring the Decisions of Human Facial Forensic Examiners


Carina Hahn sits at a workstation and looks at a computer screen.
Credit: C. Hahn/NIST


There are highly specialized experts in this world who can match the crevices in your ear with the ones in a grainy photo. NIST researcher Carina Hahn is part of a team evaluating their decisions.




US Department of Commerce Gold Medal, 2020

Selected Publications

Perceptual expertise in forensic facial image comparison

P. Jonathon Phillips, David White, Alice O'Toole, Carina A. Hahn, Matthew Hill
Forensic facial identification examiners are required to match the identity of faces in images that vary substantially, owing to changes in viewing conditions


NIST Explainable AI Workshop Summary

P. Jonathon Phillips, Carina Hahn, Peter Fontana, Amy Yates, Matthew Smith
This report represents a summary of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Explainable Artificial Intelligence (AI) Workshop, which NIST held
Created September 24, 2019, Updated April 5, 2024