Development that Works
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    This blog highlights effective ideas in the fight against poverty and exclusion, and analyzes the impact of development projects in Latin America and the Caribbean.
  • Tag: crime

    Found 6 posts.

    The Kuznets criminal curve

    By - 24 de April de 2014, 6:54 am

    By: Paolo Buonanno*, Leopoldo Fergusson**, Juan F. Vargas***

    Crime Kuznets


    Introducing … the CKC

    In almost every US state, the relationship between crime and income is strikingly clear.  Since 1970, the data shows a pervasive pattern similar to an inverted U-shape: crime increases with per capita income until it reaches a maximum and then decreases as income keeps rising. Figure 1 shows income measured in the horizontal axis as real per capita GDP (2009) and the crime rate –per 100,000 inhabitants– which aggregates the seven felony offenses recorded in the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports. The solid line is a flexible non-parametric fit of the data, and the shaded area is the 95% confidence band.

    Figure 1: Crime rates and income in the US, 1970-2011

    ferguson fig 1

    In a recent paper, we document for the first time (as far as we can tell) the existence of this non-monotonic relationship between crime and income. We call it the “Crime Kuznets Curve” (or CKC) inspired by the classic Kuznets Curve (KC). In his seminal 1955 paper, Simon Kuznets noted a similar non-linear association between inequality and economic growth.

    Read more…

    Cash and Crime

    By - 11 de September de 2013, 6:13 am

    cash crime eng

    I find it very hard to work or write on airplanes so in my last trip, I watched Rounders. Matt Damon –whose smile lights up any smoke-filled room – is a reformed gambler and current law student whose girlfriend (a translucent Gretchen Moll) wants him to kick the habit. He picks up his best friend (Edward Norton, appropriately called the “worm”) from prison, and the worm goes straight back to shady deals in damp and dark Poker rooms in NYC. Norton persuades Damon back into gambling so that he can beat a nasty Russian mobster (a very. very nasty John Malkovich) in a game of Texas hold ‘em and pay back a debt. It’s all downhill from there. Read more…

    The Costs of Crime and Violence in Latin America and the Caribbean

    By - 5 de February de 2013, 6:55 am

    By: Ana Corbacho and Carlos Scartascini *

    The Costs of Crime and Violence in Latin America and the CaribbeanCrime and violence are major concerns in Latin America and the Caribbean. The region suffers from the highest homicide rate in the world, reaching over 25 deaths per 100,000 people in recent years, tripling the global average.

    The region is also affected by widespread common crime, which victimizes more than 10 percent of the population and 30 percent of firms. Not surprisingly, crime and violence have climbed the ranks in public opinion surveys to showcase as the top concern of citizens in the last few years.

    As a major policy challenge, crime and violence take up a substantial amount of governments’ resources and efforts. However, there is much to be done to understand the root causes as well as the negative consequences of these phenomena.

    The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has pioneered a rigorous research agenda that aims to quantify the different dimensions of the cost of crime and violence.

    “Costing” crime is a first step to inform the public policy debate and provide tools for systematic analysis of the cost-effectiveness of citizen security policies promoted by governments.

    Some of this work was presented at an IDB sponsored event on January 24-25. The preliminary results are both disheartening—the costs of crime are extremely high—and encouraging: home-grown policy innovations in the region are starting to show promise in reducing the crime epidemic.

    What are the main conclusions of these studies? Read more…

    10 principles on crime prevention

    By - 14 de September de 2012, 5:54 am

    10 principles on crime preventionLawrence Sherman is one of the world’s most renowned experts on crime prevention. His use of empirical evidence, mainly derived from randomized field experiments in criminal sanctions and crime prevention, has had a profound impact in policy in the developed world.

    He recently developed for the IDB a protocol

    designed mainly for people working to reduce crime and improve justice in Latin America, but it discusses principles that can be used anywhere in the world. Those principles can be summarized as evidence-based crime prevention, a process by which good evidence on the facts of crime and its prevention is at the heart of theories and programs for promoting citizen security.

    The protocol is based on 10 principles Read more…

    Crime, emotions and gender: from fútbol to football

    By - 11 de January de 2012, 6:51 am

    Crime, emotions and gender

    I just finished reading a fascinating paper on soccer and crime in Uruguay (4th in the 2010 World Cup), by Ignacio Munyo and Martín Rossi from the Universidad de San Andrés in Argentina.

    Rossi is also the author of another interesting paper on conscription and crime where he showed that participation in the Argentinian military service increases the likelihood of developing a criminal record in adulthood….But that is subject matter for a future blog.

    In their paper, Rossi and Munyo find that frustration (losing when winning was expected) is followed by a spike in violent crime (robbery and assault) that lasts for one hour.

    Euphoria (winning when losing was expected) is followed by a reduction in violent crime that, again, lasts for one hour. If the game is between arch rivals Peñarol and Nacional – an evenly matched affair, with no usual favorite – violent crime spikes, again, one hour after the end of the game.

    Clearly a fraction of violent crime reflects a breakdown of control, what the authors call one hour of irrational behavior.

    Although the authors do not report specifically on domestic violence, it is reasonable to assume much of these spikes in violence are related to domestic violence.  Other authors (more below) report significant increases of police reports of at-home male on female intimate partner violence, after upset losses in professional football. Read more…