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Happiness and Beliefs in Criminal Environments

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  • Rafael Di Tella
  • Robert MacCulloch
  • Hugo R. Ñopo

Abstract

This paper uses newly available data to describe the distribution of crime victimization and other criminal activities (including drug trafficking and corruption) around the world. The paper then documents a negative (positive) correlation between measures of criminal activity and happiness and measures of positive (negative) emotions. The paper also studies the correlation between ideological beliefs and criminal activity, finding that crime victims are more likely to believe that hard work does not pay and that the government should increase the amount of redistribution to the poor.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Inter-American Development Bank in its series IDB Publications with number 6518.

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Date of creation: Dec 2008
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Handle: RePEc:idb:brikps:6518

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Keywords: Citizen Security & Crime Prevention; WP-662;

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References

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  1. Fajnzylber, Pablo & Lederman, Daniel & Loayza, Norman, 2002. "Inequality and Violent Crime," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 45(1), pages 1-40, April.
  2. Easterlin, Richard A, 2001. "Income and Happiness: Towards an Unified Theory," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(473), pages 465-84, July.
  3. Clark, Andrew E & Oswald, Andrew J, 1994. "Unhappiness and Unemployment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(424), pages 648-59, May.
  4. Blanchflower, David G. & Oswald, Andrew J., 2004. "Well-being over time in Britain and the USA," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 88(7-8), pages 1359-1386, July.
  5. Alejandro Gaviria Uribe & Carlos Eduardo Vélez, 2001. "Who Bears the Burden of Crime in Colombia," INFORMES DE INVESTIGACIÓN, FEDESARROLLO 003776, FEDESARROLLO.
  6. Gary S. Becker, 1968. "Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 76, pages 169.
  7. Robert J. MacCulloch & Rafael Di Tella & Andrew J. Oswald, 2001. "Preferences over Inflation and Unemployment: Evidence from Surveys of Happiness," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 91(1), pages 335-341, March.
  8. Jens Ludwig & Philip J. Cook, 1999. "The Benefits of Reducing Gun Violence: Evidence from Contingent-Valuation Survey Data," NBER Working Papers, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc 7166, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Rosen, Sherwin, 1988. " The Value of Changes in Life Expectancy," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, Springer, vol. 1(3), pages 285-304, September.
  10. Nattavudh Powdthavee, 2005. "Unhappiness and Crime: Evidence from South Africa," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 72(3), pages 531-547, 08.
  11. Alejandro Gaviria & Carmen Pagés-Serra, 1999. "Patterns of Crime Victimization in Latin America," IDB Publications, Inter-American Development Bank 4124, Inter-American Development Bank.
  12. Soares, Rodrigo R., 2006. "The welfare cost of violence across countries," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 25(5), pages 821-846, September.
  13. Winkelmann, Liliana & Winkelmann, Rainer, 1998. "Why Are the Unemployed So Unhappy? Evidence from Panel Data," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 65(257), pages 1-15, February.
  14. Piketty, Thomas, 1995. "Social Mobility and Redistributive Politics," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 110(3), pages 551-84, August.
  15. Ravallion, Martin & Lokshin, Michael, 2001. "Identifying Welfare Effects from Subjective Questions," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 68(271), pages 335-57, August.
  16. Alex Michalos & Bruno Zumbo, 2000. "Criminal Victimization and the Quality of Life," Social Indicators Research, Springer, Springer, vol. 50(3), pages 245-295, June.
  17. Steven D. Levitt, 1999. "The changing relationship between income and crime victimization," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Sep, pages 87-98.
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Cited by:
  1. Dedehouanou, Senakpon & Maertens, Miet, 2011. "Participation in Modern Agri-Food Supply Chain in Senegal and Happiness," 2011 International Congress, August 30-September 2, 2011, Zurich, Switzerland, European Association of Agricultural Economists 114447, European Association of Agricultural Economists.

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