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Group Profiling for Alcohol Impaired Motorists with Driving Skills Disparities: Should we Care for Fairness?

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  • Sergio Parra Cely

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    Abstract

    A game theory model with incomplete and imperfect information is proposed here to understand the decision faced by motorists, from two identifiable groups, to drive under the influence of alcohol. In order to assess the best implementable policy, the rational decision from a traffic police force to engage in a group profiling policy strategy is described. We also suggest a perfect bayesian equilibrium solution, provinding conditions of existence and uniqueness. The predictions from this model suggest that, if there exist disparities in the driving skills for both groups when motorists are impaired by alcohol, traffic police officers should stop and administrate a breath alcohol test to a higher proportion of motorists from the group with the largest violation rate. Therefore, we suggest that group profiling through a statistical discrimination procedure is feasible. However, if there is no statistical evidence to support such disparity, only a fair policy -that is, to stop and test motorists from both groups with the same intensity- is implementable. In this latter case, we suggest that a biased behavior in policing is explained by prejudice or taste-based discrimination.

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    File URL: http://www.javeriana.edu.co/fcea/coleccion_universitas_Economica/Vol_11/Vol.11_9_2011.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by UNIVERSIDAD JAVERIANA - BOGOTÁ in its series VNIVERSITAS ECONÓMICA with number 010089.

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    Length: 16
    Date of creation: 29 Sep 2011
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    Handle: RePEc:col:000416:010089

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    1. Bruce Benson & Brent Mast & David Rasmussen, 2000. "Can police deter drunk driving?," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(3), pages 357-366.
    2. John Knowles & Nicola Persico & Petra Todd, 2001. "Racial Bias in Motor Vehicle Searches: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(1), pages 203-232, February.
    3. Phelps, Edmund S, 1972. "The Statistical Theory of Racism and Sexism," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 62(4), pages 659-61, September.
    4. David Bjerk, 2004. "Racial Profiling, Statistical Discrimination, and the Effect of a Colorblind Policy on the Crime Rate," Department of Economics Working Papers 2004-11, McMaster University.
    5. Kate Antonovics & Brian G. Knight, 2009. "A New Look at Racial Profiling: Evidence from the Boston Police Department," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 91(1), pages 163-177, February.
    6. Steven D. Levitt & Jack Porter, 2001. "How Dangerous Are Drinking Drivers?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(6), pages 1198-1237, December.
    7. Kenkel, Donald S, 1993. "Drinking, Driving, and Deterrence: The Effectiveness and Social Costs of Alternative Policies," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 36(2), pages 877-913, October.
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