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Punishment – and beyond

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  • Bruno S. Frey

Abstract

This paper argues that the “Economics of Crime” concentrates too much on punishment as a policy to fight crime, which is unwise for several reasons. There are important instances in which punishment simply cannot reduce crime. Several feasible alternatives to punishment exist, such as offering positive incentives or handing out awards for law abiding behavior. These alternative approaches tend to create a positive sum environment. When people appreciate living in a society that is to a large extent law abiding, they are more motivated to observe the law.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich in its series IEW - Working Papers with number 418.

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Date of creation: Jun 2009
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Handle: RePEc:zur:iewwpx:418

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Keywords: Crime; Punishment; Incentives; Motivation; Framing; Broken Window Theory;

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References

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Cited by:
  1. Gerlinde Fellner & Rupert Sausgruber & Christian Traxler, 2009. "Testing Enforcement Strategies in the Field: Legal Threat, Moral Appeal and Social Information," Working Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods 2009_31, Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods.
  2. Chen, Yu-Fu & Funke, Michael, 2009. "Booms, Recessions and Financial Turmoil: A Fresh Look at Investment Decisions under Cyclical Uncertainty," SIRE Discussion Papers 2009-31, Scottish Institute for Research in Economics (SIRE).

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