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Unhappiness and Crime: Evidence from South Africa

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  • Powdthavee, Nattavudh

Abstract

This paper is the first of its kind to study quality of life responses of crime victims. Using cross-sectional data from the OHS97 survey of South Africa, we show that victims report significantly lower well-being than the non-victims, ceteris paribus. The calculated ‘compensating variation’ suggests that it would take, on average, an extra $10,000 per month to offset the psychological costs of crime. Happiness is lower for nonvictimized respondents currently living in higher crime areas. However, we find a strong evidence for females that criminal victimization hurts, but hurts less if the crime rate on our reference group is high.

Suggested Citation

  • Powdthavee, Nattavudh, 2003. "Unhappiness and Crime: Evidence from South Africa," Economic Research Papers 269569, University of Warwick - Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:uwarer:269569
    DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.269569
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Institutional and Behavioral Economics; Labor and Human Capital;

    JEL classification:

    • D60 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - General
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • J10 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - General
    • O10 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - General
    • O55 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Africa

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