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Crime and Conformism

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  • Patacchini, Eleonora
  • Zenou, Yves

Abstract

We propose a simple conformism model that explains how parental education and peer pressure impact on criminal activities. We then test the model using the U.S. National Longitudinal Survey of Adolescent Health (AddHealth), which contains unique information on friendship relationships among delinquent teenagers. We find that conformity is very strong within groups of delinquents and that the higher the taste for conformity of an individual, the lower the deviation from the norm's group. These results suggest that, for teenagers, the decision to commit crimes is not a simple choice based primarily on individual considerations but is strongly affected by their environment and peers.

Suggested Citation

  • Patacchini, Eleonora & Zenou, Yves, 2005. "Crime and Conformism," CEPR Discussion Papers 5331, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:5331
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    6. Calvo-Armengol, Antoni & Verdier, Thierry & Zenou, Yves, 2007. "Strong and weak ties in employment and crime," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(1-2), pages 203-233, February.
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    9. Coralio Ballester & Antoni Calvó-Armengol & Yves Zenou, 2006. "Who's Who in Networks. Wanted: The Key Player," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 74(5), pages 1403-1417, September.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Laetitia HAURET & Eric LANGLAIS & Carine SONNTAG, 2011. "On The Deterrent Effect Of Individual Versus Collective Liability In Criminal Organizations," Journal of Advanced Research in Law and Economics, ASERS Publishing, vol. 2(4), pages 125-135.
    2. Paolo Buonanno & Daniel Montolio & Paolo Vanin, 2009. "Does Social Capital Reduce Crime?," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 52(1), pages 145-170, February.
    3. Paolo Buonanno & Giacomo Pasini & Paolo Vanin, 2012. "Crime and social sanction," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 91(1), pages 193-218, March.
    4. Harminder Battu & McDonald Mwale & Yves Zenou, 2007. "Oppositional identities and the labor market," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 20(3), pages 643-667, July.
    5. Calvo-Armengol, Antoni & Verdier, Thierry & Zenou, Yves, 2007. "Strong and weak ties in employment and crime," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(1-2), pages 203-233, February.
    6. Patacchini, Eleonora & Zenou, Yves, 2008. "The strength of weak ties in crime," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 52(2), pages 209-236, February.
    7. Buonanno, Paolo & Vanin, Paolo, 2017. "Social closure, surnames and crime," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 137(C), pages 160-175.
    8. Robert Dur & Joël Van Der Weele, 2013. "Status-Seeking in Criminal Subcultures and the Double Dividend of Zero-Tolerance," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 15(1), pages 77-93, February.
    9. Bisin, Alberto & Patacchini, Eleonora & Verdier, Thierry & Zenou, Yves, 2006. "'Bend It Like Beckham': Identity, Socialization and Assimilation," CEPR Discussion Papers 5662, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    conformism; juvenile crime; norms; parents' education;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • A14 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Sociology of Economics
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law

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