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Does the Military Train Men to be Violent Criminals? New Evidence from Australia’s Conscription Lotteries

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Abstract

Combat is the most intense form of military service, but several aspects of the training experience, which explicitly prepares people for violent warfare, are hypothesized to link service to violent crime. Using Australia’s Vietnam-era conscription lotteries for identification and criminal court data from Australia’s three largest states, we seek to estimate the effect of army training on violent crime. Using various specifications, we find no evidence that military training causes violent crime, and our point estimates are always negative. In our preferred specification (using only non-deployed cohorts), we rule out with 95% confidence any positive violent crime effects larger than 3.6% relative to the mean.

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File URL: http://business.uow.edu.au/content/groups/public/@web/@commerce/@econ/documents/web/uow141007.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by School of Economics, University of Wollongong, NSW, Australia in its series Economics Working Papers with number wp13-01.

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Length: 39 pages
Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:uow:depec1:wp13-01

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Postal: School of Economics, University of Wollongong, Northfields Avenue, Wollongong NSW 2522 Australia
Phone: +612 4221-3659
Fax: +612 4221-3725
Web page: http://business.uow.edu.au/econ/index.html
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Keywords: Violent Crime; Military Service; Natural Experiment; Australia;

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