Dr. Eric D. Shaw, Consulting and Clinical Psychology, Ltd.


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In addition to my full-time clinical practice, I have spent the last 20 years specializing in the psychological profiling of corporate leaders and managers, political actors and forensic subjects.  I have approached profiling from the perspective of an organizational consultant supporting manager development and organizational change, as well as a clinician aiding corporate security, an intelligence officer supporting national security interests and a legal consultant providing negotiation and litigation assistance.  Recently, this has also involved providing expert witness support to the Department of Justice on Insider Issues involving the Anthrax case and psycholinguistic expertise in cases of possible fraud (Ceglia versus Zuckerberg and Facebook, Inc.). In addition, I have provided traditional psychological treatment, screening, monitoring and debriefing services to government and corporate clients.

These specific consulting activities include:

  • Investigations, Threat Assessment and Management: evaluations designed to help victims, law enforcement and security personnel develop management, monitoring and intervention plans.  I have also conducted direct negotiations with threatening individuals and assisted law enforcement and corporate security with interview and case management approaches.  Recent cases have involved threatening communications accompanied by frightening substances, live and cyber stalking,  product tampering, threats against corporate officers and employees, evaluation of the suicide risk of a noted, indicted, financier for his protective detail and assessment of disgruntled employees threatening sabotage and workplace violence.  I am also currently affiliated with Stroz Friedberg, Inc.—a leading forensic investigation firm—where I assist them with the behavioral component of their corporate investigations. (For example, see The New York Times, August 7, 2005, article by Tim O’Brien in the Business Section, page 1).  I am also certified in Critical Incident Stress Debriefing and served with the FBI’s Evidence Recovery Team at the Pentagon site after September 11th.  Additional assignments have involved assessment of terrorist risk from persons affiliated with radical clerics.  If you are interested in these services, examples of executive summaries from reports addressing such threat assessment issues and whether one or more people wrote anonymous letters containing threats, click on each of the following:

    Case 1

    Case 2 

    Case 3

    Case 4


  • Cross Cultural Political Psychological Profiling for the national security community: in the past, as an intelligence officer and a consultant to other intelligence and security organizations, I specialized in the profiling of foreign political leaders and organizations.  During the first Gulf War, I provided profiling support to the Persian Gulf Task Force and contributed directly to U.S. Government strategy and tactics based on assessments of the psychological state and political attitudes of Saddam Hussein. Consulting activities for the Intelligence Community have also included the assessment of the organizational processes of terrorist groups, and the development of training manuals and indications and warning systems for intelligence analysts.


  • Research and Consultation on Insiders Committing workplace violence, sabotage and espionage: From 1998 through 2000 I led a profiling effort of computer hackers sponsored by the Department of Defense.  This work identifies individuals at-risk for computer crime, specific motivational subtypes and describes the critical pathway these individuals travel toward escalation to destructive acts. I now provide consultation to corporate and government clients concerned with cyber crimes and workplace violence by employees and outsiders. I currently serve as a Visiting Scientist at Carnegie Mellon’s Software Engineering Institute where I assist their Insider Threat Team with the individual and organizational psychological issues contributing to these threats. 


  • Research and Development: I have worked on developing new approaches to the remote assessment of individuals and groups.  I have been particularly interested in the specialized use of content analysis techniques to produce profiles.  These methods draw heavily on individual and group communications, including speeches, interviews, email and other on-line communications.  I recently received four patents for software designed to profile individuals at-risk for anti-social acts from their computerized communications.  This system is being beta tested as a threat assessment tool at a behavioral sciences division of a law enforcement agency and at a computer security firm as a means of detecting employees at-risk for psychological problems.  Other current development projects include:


    • The use of profiling software to improve online relationships such that a user can evaluate the frequency of contact and emotional tone of their relationships, use profiling algorithms to understand others, produce specific communication strategies tailored to these profiles, implement these approaches and monitor their effectiveness;
    • An evaluation process to determine an organization’s capabilities to prevent, detect and manage employees  at-risk for anti-social acts or other insider activities that examines the group’s HR, security and management assets from employee screening through termination;
    • Through Carnegie Mellon’s Software Engineering Institute, a video game designed to train managers on detecting and dealing with insider risks.

·         Expert Witness Support:

  • US Department of Justice 2010-2011 in Stevens vs. US: should the Army have known about Bruce Ivins serious mental health disorders and taken steps to prevent his access to anthrax—report and deposition on issues related to Army liability.

  • Ceglia versus Zuckerberg and Facebook, Inc. 2011: use of psycholinguistic analysis of alleged materials indicating that Zuckerberg had promised shares in Facebook to Ceglia. 

●  On-call psychological support to the Fairfax County Police Department 2011—provide on-call psychological services to officers involved in shootings and other violence.

In addition to these consulting activities, I am an adjunct Professorial Lecturer in Political Psychology at the Elliot School of International Studies of George Washington University where I teach a course on research methods in political psychology to graduate students.  This course allows me to share my interest in cross cultural and political issues with students and other professionals.  In general, I find that my on-going clinical experience and practice helps me sharpen my consulting and teaching skills and broaden the range of services I can offer my clients.  At the same time, my consulting activities allow me to appreciate the complexity of my patient’s cultural and work life and provide them with additional assistance in this area, as needed and appropriate.


Psycholinguistics in Forensic Profiling

If you are interested in case illustrations using psycholinguistics for forensic profiling, click on each of the following:

Case 5 - Detecting Insider Risk and Deception—a Bank Systems Administrator 

Case 6 - Robert Hanssen at the FBI

Case 7 - Are Anonymous Threats from the Same Author?

Case 8 - Russian Hacker Extortion Against Bloomberg

Case 9 - Cyber Stalker

Case 10 - Relationship Management


© Copyright 2009 by Eric D. Shaw, Ph.D.


Contact: DrShaw@DrEricShaw.com (E-mail is not secure. Please do not send private information.)  Phone 202-686-9150