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Active labor market policies and crime

Author

Listed:
  • Torben Tranaes

    (SFI—The Danish National Centre for Social Research, Denmark, and IZA, Germany)

Abstract

Active labor market programs continue to receive high priority in wealthy countries despite the fact that the benefits appear small relative to the costs. This apparent discrepancy suggests that the programs may have a broader purpose than simply increasing employment—for instance, preventing anti-social behavior such as crime. Indeed, recent evidence shows that participation in active labor market programs reduces crime among unemployed young men. The existence of such effects could explain why it is the income-redistributing countries with greater income equality that spend the most on active labor market programs.

Suggested Citation

  • Torben Tranaes, 2015. "Active labor market policies and crime," IZA World of Labor, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), pages 185-185, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izawol:journl:y:2015:n:185
    as

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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Stephen Machin & Olivier Marie, 2006. "Crime and benefit sanctions," Portuguese Economic Journal, Springer;Instituto Superior de Economia e Gestao, vol. 5(2), pages 149-165, August.
    2. Denis Fougère & Francis Kramarz & Julien Pouget, 2009. "Youth Unemployment and Crime in France," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 7(5), pages 909-938, September.
    3. Brian A. Jacob & Lars Lefgren, 2003. "Are Idle Hands the Devil's Workshop? Incapacitation, Concentration, and Juvenile Crime," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(5), pages 1560-1577, December.
    4. Peter Fallesen & Lars Pico Geerdsen & Susumu Imai & Torben Tranaes, 2010. "The Effect of Workfare Policy on Crime," Working Papers 1236, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
    5. Bell, Brian & Bindler, Anna & Machin, Stephen, 2014. "Crime scars: recessions and the making of career criminals," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 60355, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    6. Fallesen, Peter & Geerdsen, Lars Pico & Imai, Susumu & Tranæs, Torben, 2014. "The Effect of Workfare on Crime: Incapacitation and Program Effects," IZA Discussion Papers 8716, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    7. D. Mark Anderson, 2014. "In School and Out of Trouble? The Minimum Dropout Age and Juvenile Crime," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 96(2), pages 318-331, May.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    the economics of crime; activation; workfare; marginalized youth;

    JEL classification:

    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law

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