Measuring the Long-Term Effects of Public Policy: The Case of Narcotics Use and Property Crime
The effects of treatment and legal supervision on narcotics use and criminal activities were assessed by applying newly developed time-series methods that disentangle the long-term (permanent) and the short-term (temporary) effects of intervention. A multivariate systems approach was used to characterize the dynamic interplay of several related behaviors at a group level over a long period of time. Five variables---abstinence from narcotics use, daily narcotics use (or addiction), property crime, methadone maintenance treatment, and legal supervision---were derived by aggregating information from over 600 narcotic addiction histories averaging 12 years in length. Because of the long assessment period, age was also included as a control variable. Overall, the system dynamics among the variables were characterized by long-term rather than short-term relationships. Neither methadone maintenance nor legal supervision had short-term effects on narcotics use or property crime. Methadone maintenance treatment demonstrated long-term benefits by reducing narcotics use and criminal activities. Legal supervision, on the other hand, did not reduce either narcotics use or property crime in the long run. Instead, there was a positive long-term relationship in which a higher level of legal supervision was related to higher levels of narcotics use and criminal activity. This latter finding is consistent with the observation that either narcotics use or criminal activity is likely to bring addicts to the attention of the legal system. However, these addicts, as a group, did not directly respond to legal supervision by changing their narcotics use or crime involvement except perhaps through coerced treatment. The paper explores the policy implications of these findings.
Volume (Year): 37 (1991)
Issue (Month): 6 (June)
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: 7240 Parkway Drive, Suite 300, Hanover, MD 21076 USA|
Web page: http://www.informs.org/
More information through EDIRC
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:37:y:1991:i:6:p:627-644. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mirko Janc)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.