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On the Disutility and Discounting of Imprisonment and the Theory of Deterrence

  • A. Mitchell Polinsky
  • Steven Shavell

This article studies the implications for the theory of deterrence of (a) the manner in" which individuals' disutility from imprisonment varies with the length of the imprisonment" term; and (b) discounting of the future disutility and future public costs of imprisonment. Two" questions are addressed: Is deterrence enhanced more by increasing the length of imprisonment" terms or instead by raising the likelihood of imposing imprisonment? What is the optimal" combination of the severity and probability of imprisonment sanctions?"

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w6259.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 6259.

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Date of creation: Nov 1997
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Journal of Legal Studies, Vol. 28, no. 1 (January 1999): 1-16.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:6259
Note: LE
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  1. Kriminal in Wikipedia Serbo-Croatian ne '')
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  4. Crime in Wikipedia English ne '')
  5. Criminalità in Wikipedia Italian ne '')

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