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The Economic Determinants of Crime: an Approach through Responsiveness Scores

Author

Listed:
  • Giovanni Cerulli

    () (CNR-IRCrES)

  • Maria Ventura

    () (STICERD, London School of Economics)

  • Christopher F Baum

    () (Boston College
    DIW Berlin)

Abstract

Criminality has always been part of human social interactions, shaping the way peoples have constructed states and legislation. As social order became a greater concern for the public authorities, interest in investigating incentives pushing individuals towards engaging in illegal activities has become a central issue of the political agenda. Building on the existing literature, this paper proposes to focus on a few primary determinants of crime, whose e ect is in- vestigated using a Responsiveness Scores (RS) approach performed over 50 US states during the period 2000-2012. The RS approach allows us to account for unit heterogeneous response to each single determinant, thus paving the way to a more in-depth analysis of the relation between crime and its drivers. We attempt to overcome the limitations posed by standard regression methods, which assume a single coecient for all determinants, thus contributing to the literature in the field with stronger evidence on determinants' e ects and the geographical patterns of responsiveness scores.

Suggested Citation

  • Giovanni Cerulli & Maria Ventura & Christopher F Baum, 2018. "The Economic Determinants of Crime: an Approach through Responsiveness Scores," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 948, Boston College Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:boc:bocoec:948
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano & Giovanni Peri, 2016. "The economic value of cultural diversity: evidence from US cities," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: The Economics of International Migration, chapter 7, pages 229-264 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    2. Gumus, Erdal, 2003. "Crime in Urban Areas: An Empirical Investigation," MPRA Paper 42106, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Eric D. Gould & Bruce A. Weinberg & David B. Mustard, 2002. "Crime Rates And Local Labor Market Opportunities In The United States: 1979-1997," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(1), pages 45-61, February.
    4. Oreopoulos, Philip, 2007. "Do dropouts drop out too soon? Wealth, health and happiness from compulsory schooling," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(11-12), pages 2213-2229, December.
    5. Jeffrey M Wooldridge, 2010. "Econometric Analysis of Cross Section and Panel Data," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 2, volume 1, number 0262232588, March.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Crime; Incentives; Responsiveness Scores;

    JEL classification:

    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • P46 - Economic Systems - - Other Economic Systems - - - Consumer Economics; Health; Education and Training; Welfare, Income, Wealth, and Poverty

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