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Organization and Information in the Fight against Crime: An Evaluation of the Integration of Police Forces in the State of Minas Gerais, Brazil

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  • Soares, Rodrigo R.

    ()
    (Sao Paulo School of Economics)

  • Viveiros, Igor

    ()
    (Federal University of Ouro Preto)

Abstract

This paper explores the experience of information sharing, coordination, and integration of actions of the Civil and Military Polices in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil, in the context of the IGESP program. The IGESP is based on the introduction of information management systems and organizational changes akin to those associated with COMPSTAT. All the evidence presented points to a causal effect of the IGESP on crime. The most conservative estimates indicate a reduction of 24% in property crimes and 13% in personal crimes. There is also evidence that the IGESP is associated with improved police response, measured by apprehension of weapons and clearance rates. We present one of the first set of causal estimates – with a clear identification strategy – of the impact of COMPSTAT-like programs. The results suggest that the coordination and informational gains represented by the program may constitute a first-order factor in a successful policy for fighting crime.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 5270.

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Length: 45 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5270

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Keywords: crime; police; Brazil; COMPSTAT; impact evaluation;

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  1. Luis Garicano & Paul Heaton, 2007. "Information technology, organization, and productivity in the public sector: evidence from police departments," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19686, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  2. Soares, Rodrigo R, 2004. "Crime Reporting as a Measure of Institutional Development," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 52(4), pages 851-71, July.
  3. Ciro Biderman & João Manoel Pinho de Mello & Alexandre A Schneider, 2006. "Dry law and homicides: evidence from the São Paulo metropolitan area," Textos para discussão 518, Department of Economics PUC-Rio (Brazil), revised Oct 2008.
  4. Levitt, Steven D, 1997. "Using Electoral Cycles in Police Hiring to Estimate the Effect of Police on Crime," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(3), pages 270-90, June.
  5. Sebastian Galiani & Paul Gertler & Ernesto Schargrodsky, 2005. "Water for Life: The Impact of the Privatization of Water Services on Child Mortality," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(1), pages 83-120, February.
  6. Soares, Rodrigo R., 2004. "Development, crime and punishment: accounting for the international differences in crime rates," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 155-184, February.
  7. Rafael Di Tella & Ernesto Schargrodsky, 2004. "Do Police Reduce Crime? Estimates Using the Allocation of Police Forces After a Terrorist Attack," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(1), pages 115-133, March.
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