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Punishment - and beyond

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  • Bruno S. Frey

Abstract

This paper argues that the “Economics of Crime” concentrates too much on punishment as a policy to fight crime, which is unwise for several reasons. There are important instances in which punishment simply cannot reduce crime. Several feasible alternatives to punishment exist, such as offering positive incentives or handing out awards for law abiding behavior. These alternative approaches tend to create a positive sum environment. When people appreciate living in a society that is to a large extent law abiding, they are more motivated to observe the law.

Suggested Citation

  • Bruno S. Frey, 2009. "Punishment - and beyond," CESifo Working Paper Series 2706, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2706
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Gerlinde Fellner & Rupert Sausgruber & Christian Traxler, 2009. "Testing Enforcement Strategies in the Field: Legal Threat, Moral Appeal and Social Information," Discussion Paper Series of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods 2009_31, Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods.
    2. Yu-Fu Chen & Michael Funke, 2010. "Booms, Recessions And Financial Turmoil: A Fresh Look At Investment Decisions Under Cyclical Uncertainty," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 57(s1), pages 290-317, July.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    crime; punishment; incentives; motivation; framing; broken window theory;

    JEL classification:

    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives

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