Living on the Edge: Youth Entry, Career and Exit in Drug-Selling Gangs
AbstractWe use data from a unique survey of members of drug-trafficking gangs in favelas (slums) of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, to characterize drug-trafficking jobs and study the selection into gangs, analyzing what distinguishes gang-members from other youth living in favelas. We also estimate wage regressions for gang-members and examine their career path: age at entry, progression within the gangs' hierarchy, and short- to medium-term outcomes. Individuals from lower socioeconomic background and with no religious affiliation have higher probability of joining a gang, while those with problems at school and early use of drugs join the gang at younger ages. Wages within the gang do not depend on education, but are increasing with experience and involvement in gang-related violence. The two-year mortality rate in the sample of gang-members reaches 20%, with the probability of death increasing with initial involvement in gang violence and with personality traits associated with unruliness.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 7189.
Length: 37 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2013
Date of revision:
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Other versions of this item:
- Leandro Siqueira Carvalho & Rodrigo R. Soares, 2013. "Living on the Edge: Youth Entry, Career and Exit in Drug-Selling Gangs," Textos para discussão 605, Department of Economics PUC-Rio (Brazil).
- J4 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets
- K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law
- O15 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
- O17 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Formal and Informal Sectors; Shadow Economy; Institutional Arrangements
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2013-02-16 (All new papers)
- NEP-DEM-2013-02-16 (Demographic Economics)
- NEP-IUE-2013-02-16 (Informal & Underground Economics)
- NEP-LAM-2013-02-16 (Central & South America)
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