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Good Jobs and Recidivism

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  • Kevin T. Schnepel

Abstract

I estimate the impact of employment opportunities on recidivism among 1.7 million offenders released from a California prison between 1993 and 2008. The institutional structure of the California criminal justice system as well as location, skill, and industry†specific job accession data provide a unique framework for identifying a causal effect of job availability on criminal behaviour. I find that increases in construction and manufacturing opportunities at the time of release are associated with significant reductions in recidivism. Other types of opportunities, including those characterised by lower wages that are typically accessible to individuals with criminal records, do not influence recidivism.

Suggested Citation

  • Kevin T. Schnepel, 2018. "Good Jobs and Recidivism," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 128(608), pages 447-469, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:econjl:v:128:y:2018:i:608:p:447-469
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    File URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/ecoj.12415
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:aea:aejpol:v:11:y:2019:i:2:p:301-27 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Jennifer L. Doleac & Benjamin Hansen, 2016. "Does “Ban the Box” Help or Hurt Low-Skilled Workers? Statistical Discrimination and Employment Outcomes When Criminal Histories are Hidden," NBER Working Papers 22469, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Roberto Galbiati & Aurélie Ouss & Arnaud Philippe, 2015. "Jobs, News and Re-offending after Incarceration," Sciences Po publications 41, Sciences Po.
    4. Amanda Y. Agan & Michael D. Makowsky, 2018. "The Minimum Wage, EITC, and Criminal Recidivism," Working Papers 616, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    5. Joshua M. Congdon-Hohman, 2018. "The persistent labor market effects of a criminal conviction and “Ban the Box” reforms," Working Papers 1808, College of the Holy Cross, Department of Economics.
    6. Jackson, Osborne & Zhao, Bo, 2017. "Does changing employers’ access to criminal histories affect ex-offenders’ recidivism?: evidence from the 2010–2012 Massachusetts CORI Reform," Working Papers 16-31, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
    7. repec:iza:izawol:journl:y:2017:n:399 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Joseph J. Sabia & Taylor Mackay & Thanh Tam Nguyen & Dhaval M. Dave, 2018. "Do Ban the Box Laws Increase Crime?," NBER Working Papers 24381, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Christine Braun, 2017. "Crime and the Minimum Wage," 2017 Meeting Papers 359, Society for Economic Dynamics.

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