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Who's Who in Crime Networks: Wanted - The Key Player

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  • Ballester, Coralio
  • Calvó-Armengol, Antoni
  • Zenou, Yves

Abstract

Criminals are embedded in a network of relationships. Social ties among criminals are modelled by means of a graph where criminals compete for a bounty and benefit from local interactions with their neighbours. Each criminal decides in a non-cooperative way how much crime effort they will exert. We show that the Nash equilibrium crime effort of each individual is proportional to their equilibrium Bonacich-centrality in the network, thus establishing a bridge to the sociology literature on social networks. We then analyse a policy that consists of finding and getting rid of the key player, that is, the criminal who, once removed, leads to the maximum reduction in aggregate crime. We provide a geometric characterization of the key player identified with an optimal inter-centrality measure, which takes into account both a player’s centrality and their contribution to the centrality of the others. We also provide a geometric characterization of the key group, which generalizes the key player for a group of criminals of a given size. We finally endogeneize the crime participation decision, resulting in a key player policy, which effectiveness depends on the outside opportunities available to criminals.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 4421.

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Date of creation: Jun 2004
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:4421

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Keywords: centrality measures; crime; key group; policies; social networks;

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References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Ballester, Coralio & Calvó-Armengol, Antoni & Zenou, Yves, 2005. "Who’s Who in Networks. Wanted: The Key Player," CEPR Discussion Papers 5329, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Sudipta Sarangi & Colin Cannonier & Bibhudutta Panda, . "Key Players and Key Groups in Teams," Departmental Working Papers 2011-14, Department of Economics, Louisiana State University.
  3. Antoni Calvó-Armengol & Thierry Verdier & Yves Zenou, 2004. "Strong and Weak Ties in Employment and Crime," Working Papers 180, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  4. Andrea Galeotti & Sanjeev Goyal & Matthew O. Jackson & Fernando Vega-Redondo & Leeat Yariv, 2008. "Network Games," Economics Working Papers ECO2008/07, European University Institute.
    • Andrea Galeotti & Sanjeev Goyal & Matthew O. Jackson & Fernando Vega-Redondo & Leeat Yariv, 2010. "Network Games," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 77(1), pages 218-244.
  5. Zenou, Yves, 2005. "Crime, Location and the Housing Market," Working Paper Series 651, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  6. Sergio Currarini & Elena Fumagalli & Fabrizio Panebianco, 2013. "Games on Networks: Direct Complements and Indirect Substitutes," Working Papers 2013.04, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  7. Jan K. Brueckner & Oleg Smirnov, 2007. "Workings Of The Melting Pot: Social Networks And The Evolution Of Population Attributes," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(2), pages 209-228.
  8. Patacchini, Eleonora & Zenou, Yves, 2008. "The strength of weak ties in crime," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(2), pages 209-236, February.

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