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Testing the Economic Model of Crime:The National Hockey League's Two-Referee Experiment

Listed author(s):
  • Levitt Steven D.

    ()

    (University of Chicago Department of Economics)

During the 1998-99 season, the National Hockey League randomly varied the number of referees used across games, seemingly providing a rare opportunity to test directly the deterrence model. Combining experimental parameter estimates with an economic model, there is little evidence that the rate of offending changed substantially with the addition of a second referee. The reason, however, appears to be that the second referee had little impact on the probability of punishment. As a consequence, the experiment ultimately turns out to be of limited use for testing deterrence.

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Article provided by De Gruyter in its journal The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy.

Volume (Year): 1 (2002)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 1-21

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Handle: RePEc:bpj:bejeap:v:contributions.1:y:2002:i:1:n:2
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  1. Landes, William M, 1978. "An Economic Study of U.S. Aircraft Hijacking, 1961-1976," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(1), pages 1-31, April.
  2. Daniel Kessler & Steven D. Levitt, 1998. "Using Sentence Enhancements to Distinguish between Deterrence and Incapacitation," NBER Working Papers 6484, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Gary S. Becker, 1968. "Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 76, pages 169-169.
  4. Stigler, George J, 1970. "The Optimum Enforcement of Laws," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 78(3), pages 526-536, May-June.
  5. Cameron, Samuel, 1988. "The Economics of Crime Deterrence: A Survey of Theory and Evidence," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 41(2), pages 301-323.
  6. Ann Dryden Witte, 1980. "Estimating the Economic Model of Crime With Individual Data," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 94(1), pages 57-84.
  7. Andreoni, J., 1989. "Reasonable Doubt And The Optimal Magnitude Of Fines: Should The Penalty Fit The Crime," Working papers 8908, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  8. Tauchen, Helen & Witte, Ann Dryden & Griesinger, Harriet, 1994. "Criminal Deterrence: Revisiting the Issue with a Birth Cohort," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(3), pages 399-412, August.
  9. McCormick, Robert E & Tollison, Robert D, 1984. "Crime on the Court," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 92(2), pages 223-235, April.
  10. Ronald G. Ehrenberg & Michael L. Bognanno, 1988. "Do Tournaments Have Incentive Effects?," NBER Working Papers 2638, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Ehrlich, Isaac, 1973. "Participation in Illegitimate Activities: A Theoretical and Empirical Investigation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(3), pages 521-565, May-June.
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