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Geographical Distribution of Crime in Italian Provinces: A Spatial Econometric Analysis

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Author Info

  • Teodora Erika Uberti

    (Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore)

  • Maria Francesca Cracolici

    (Catholic University of Milano)

Abstract

For a long time social sciences scholars from different fields have devoted their attention to identifying the causes leading to commit criminal offences and recently lots of studies have included the analysis of spatial effects. Respect to the Italian crime phenomenon some stylized facts exist: high spatial and time variability and presence of “organised crime” (e.g. Mafia and Camorra) deep-seated in some local territorial areas. Using explanatory spatial data analysis, the paper firstly explores the spatial structure and distribution of four different typologies of crimes (murders, thefts, frauds, and squeezes) in Italian provinces in two years, 1999 and 2003. ESDA allows us to detect some important geographical dimensions and to distinguish crucial macro- and micro- territorial aspects of offences. Further, on the basis of Becker-Ehrlich model, a spatial cross-sectional model including deterrence, economic and socio-demographic variables has been performed to investigate the determinants of Italian crime for 1999 and 2003 and its “neighbouring” effects, measured in terms of geographical and relational proximity. The empirical results obtained by using different spatial weights matrices highlighted that socioeconomic variables have a relevant impact on crime activities, but their role changes enormously respect to crimes against person (murders) or against property (thefts, frauds and squeezes). It is worthy to notice that severity does not show the expected sign: its significant and positive sign should suggest that inflicting more severe punishments does not always constitute a deterrence to commit crime, but it works on the opposite direction.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei in its series Working Papers with number 2008.11.

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Date of creation: Feb 2008
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Handle: RePEc:fem:femwpa:2008.11

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Keywords: Crime; Spatial Econometrics;

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References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Mario A. Maggioni & T. Erika Uberti & Francesca Gambarotto, 2009. "Mapping the Evolution of "Clusters": A Meta-analysis," Working Papers 2009.74, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  2. Stuart McIntyre & Donald Lacombe, 2012. "Personal Indebtedness, Spatial Effects and Crime," Working Papers 1209, University of Strathclyde Business School, Department of Economics.
  3. Rullan Rinaldi & Eva Nurwita, 2010. "The Spatial Dimension of Human Development Index in Indonesia," Working Papers in Economics and Development Studies (WoPEDS) 201001, Department of Economics, Padjadjaran University, revised Jun 2010.
  4. Becker, Sascha & Egger, Peter H & Seidel, Tobias, 2008. "Corruption Epidemics," Stirling Economics Discussion Papers 2008-09, University of Stirling, Division of Economics.
  5. Rosetta Lombardo & Marianna Falcone, 2011. "Crime And Economic Performance. A Cluster Analysis Of Panel Data On Italy'S Nuts 3 Regions," Working Papers 201112, Università della Calabria, Dipartimento di Economia, Statistica e Finanza (Ex Dipartimento di Economia e Statistica).

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