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Social Networks and Crime Decisions: The Role of Social Structure in Facilitating Delinquent Behavior

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  • Calvó-Armengol, Antoni

    ()
    (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona)

  • Zenou, Yves

    ()
    (The Research Institute of Industrial Economics)

Abstract

We develop a model in which delinquents compete with each other in criminal activities but may benefit from being friends with other criminals by learning and acquiring proper know-how on the crime business. By taking the social network connecting agents as given, we study the subgame perfect Nash equilibrium of this game in which individuals decide first to work or to become a criminal and then the crime effort provided if criminals. We show that this game always has a pure strategy subgame perfect Nash equilibrium that we characterize. Ex ante identical individuals connected through a network can end up with very different equilibrium outcomes: either employed, or isolated criminal or criminals in network. We also show that multiple equilibria with different number of active criminals and levels of involvement in rime activities may coexist and are only driven by the geometry of the pattern of links connecting criminals. Using the equilibrium concept of pairwise-stable networks, we then show that the multiplicity of equilibrium outcomes holds even when we allow for endogenous network formation.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Research Institute of Industrial Economics in its series Working Paper Series with number 601.

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Length: 19 pages
Date of creation: 21 Oct 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hhs:iuiwop:0601

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Keywords: Strategic Interactions; Multiple Equilibria; Pairwise-Stable Networks;

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References

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  1. Jens Ludwig & Greg J. Duncan & Paul Hirschfield, 2001. "Urban Poverty And Juvenile Crime: Evidence From A Randomized Housing-Mobility Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 116(2), pages 655-679, May.
  2. Antoni Calvó-Armengol & Matthew O. Jackson, 2004. "The Effects of Social Networks on Employment and Inequality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(3), pages 426-454, June.
  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. U. Horst & Jose A. Scheinkman, 2010. "Equilibria in Systems of Social Interactions," Levine's Working Paper Archive 506439000000000119, David K. Levine.
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  7. Kenneth Burdett & Ricardo Lagos & Randall Wright, 2004. "An On-The-Job Search Model Of Crime, Inequality, And Unemployment," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 45(3), pages 681-706, 08.
  8. Verdier, T. & Zenou, Y., 2000. "Racial Beliefs , Location and the Causes of Crime," DELTA Working Papers 2000-26, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  9. Chien-Chieh Huang & Derek Laing & Ping Wang, 2004. "Crime And Poverty: A Search-Theoretic Approach," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 45(3), pages 909-938, 08.
  10. Imrohoroglu, Ayse & Merlo, Antonio & Rupert, Peter, 2000. "On the Political Economy of Income Redistribution and Crime," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 41(1), pages 1-25, February.
  11. Yannis M. Ioannides & Linda Datcher Loury, 2004. "Job Information Networks, Neighborhood Effects, and Inequality," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(4), pages 1056-1093, December.
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  15. Sah, Raaj K, 1991. "Social Osmosis and Patterns of Crime," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(6), pages 1272-95, December.
  16. Matthew O. Jackson & Asher Wolinsky, 1994. "A Strategic Model of Social and Economic Networks," Discussion Papers 1098, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  17. Matthew O. Jackson, 2003. "A survey of models of network formation: Stability and efficiency," Working Papers 1161, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  18. Follmer, Hans, 1974. "Random economies with many interacting agents," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 51-62, March.
  19. Patrick Bayer & Randi Pintoff & David E. Pozen, 2003. "Building Criminal Capital Behind Bars: Social Learning in Juvenile Corrections," Working Papers 864, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
  20. Antoni Calvo-Armengol & Matthew O. Jackson, 2002. "Social Networks in Determining Employment and Wages: Patterns, Dynamics, and Inequality," Microeconomics 0211007, EconWPA.
  21. M. Keith Chen & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2003. "Does Prison Harden Inmates? A Discontinuity-based Approach," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1450, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  22. Lochner, L., 1999. "Education, Work, and Crime: Theory and Evidence," RCER Working Papers 465, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
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