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An Agent-Based Model of Mortality Shocks, Intergenerational Effects, and Urban Crime

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  • Michael Makowsky

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Abstract

Rational criminals choose crime over lawfulness because it pays better; hence poverty correlates to criminal behavior. This correlation is an insufficient historical explanation. An agent-based model of urban crime, mortality, and exogenous population shocks supplements the standard economic story, closing the gap with an empirical reality that often breaks from trend. Agent decision making within the model is built around a career maximization function, with life expectancy as the key independent variable. Rational choice takes the form of a local information heuristic, resulting in subjectively rational suboptimal decision making. The effects of population shocks are explored using the Crime and Mortality Simulation (CAMSIM), with effects demonstrated to persist across generations. Past social trauma are found to lead to higher crime rates which subsequently decline as the effect degrades, though 'aftershocks' are often experienced.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael Makowsky, 2006. "An Agent-Based Model of Mortality Shocks, Intergenerational Effects, and Urban Crime," Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation, Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation, vol. 9(2), pages 1-7.
  • Handle: RePEc:jas:jasssj:2005-68-3
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    File URL: http://jasss.soc.surrey.ac.uk/9/2/7/7.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Maria Fonoberova & Vladimir A. Fonoberov & Igor Mezic & Jadranka Mezic & P. Jeffrey Brantingham, 2012. "Nonlinear Dynamics of Crime and Violence in Urban Settings," Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation, Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation, vol. 15(1), pages 1-2.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Agent-Based Model; Crime; Bounded Rationality; Life Expectancy; Rational Choice;

    JEL classification:

    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law
    • R0 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General

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