Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=225805
 
 

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Crime and Social Interactions


Edward L. Glaeser


Harvard University - John F. Kennedy School of Government, Department of Economics; Brookings Institution; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Bruce Sacerdote


Dartmouth College - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Jose A. Scheinkman


Columbia University; Princeton University - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

February 1995

NBER Working Paper No. w5026

Abstract:     
The high degree of variance of crime rates across space (and across time) is one of the oldest puzzles in the social sciences (see Quetelet (1835)). Our empirical work strongly suggests that this variance is not the result of observed or unobserved geographic attributes. This paper presents a model where social interactions create enough covariance across individuals to explain the high cross- city variance of crime rates. This model provides a natural index of social interactions which can compare the degree of social interaction across crimes, across geographic 1units and across time. Our index gives similar results for different data samples and suggests that the amount of social interactions are highest in petty crimes (such as larceny and auto theft), moderate in more serious crimes (assault, burglary and robbery) and almost negligible in murder and rape. The index of social interactions is also applied to non-criminal choices and we find that there is substantial interaction in schooling choice.

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Date posted: August 4, 2000  

Suggested Citation

Glaeser, Edward L. and Sacerdote, Bruce and Scheinkman, Jose A., Crime and Social Interactions (February 1995). NBER Working Paper No. w5026. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=225805

Contact Information

Edward L. Glaeser (Contact Author)
Harvard University - John F. Kennedy School of Government, Department of Economics ( email )
Littauer Center
Room 315A
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-496-2150 (Phone)
617-496-1722 (Fax)
Brookings Institution
1775 Massachusetts Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20036-2188
United States
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
Bruce Sacerdote
Dartmouth College - Department of Economics ( email )
6106 Rockefeller Hall
Hanover, NH 03755
United States
603-646-2121 (Phone)
603-646-2122 (Fax)
National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
Jose A. Scheinkman
Columbia University ( email )
420 W. 118th Street
New York, NY 10027
United States
HOME PAGE: http://www.princeton.edu/~joses
Princeton University - Department of Economics ( email )
26 Prospect Avenue
Princeton, NJ 08544
United States
609-258-4020 (Phone)
609-258-6419 (Fax)
HOME PAGE: http://www.princeton.edu/~joses

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
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