Does Peacetime Military Service Affect Crime?

27 Pages Posted: 23 Aug 2013

See all articles by Karsten Albaek

Karsten Albaek

University of Copenhagen - Department of Economics

Søren Leth‐Petersen

University of Copenhagen - Department of Economics

Daniel le Maire

University of Copenhagen

Torben Tranaes

Rockwool Foundation Research Unit; Danish National Institute of Social Research (SFI); CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Abstract

Draft lottery data combined with Danish longitudinal administrative records show that military service can reduce criminal activity for youth offenders who enter service at ages 19-22. For this group property crime is reduced for up to five years from the beginning of service, and the effect is therefore not only a result of incapacitation while enrolled. We find no effect of service on violent crimes. We also find no effect of military service on educational attainment and unemployment, but we find negative effects of service on earnings. These results suggest that military service does not upgrade productive human capital directly, but rather impacts criminal activity through other channels, for example by changing the attitudes to criminal activity for this group.

Keywords: crime, military service, activation

JEL Classification: H56, K42, J24

Suggested Citation

Albaek, Karsten and Leth-Petersen, Soren and le Maire, Daniel and Tranaes, Torben, Does Peacetime Military Service Affect Crime?. IZA Discussion Paper No. 7528. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2314823

Karsten Albaek (Contact Author)

University of Copenhagen - Department of Economics ( email )

Øster Farimagsgade 5
Bygning 26
1353 Copenhagen K.
Denmark

Soren Leth-Petersen

University of Copenhagen - Department of Economics ( email )

Øster Farimagsgade 5
Bygning 26
1353 Copenhagen K.
Denmark

Daniel Le Maire

University of Copenhagen ( email )

Torben Tranaes

Rockwool Foundation Research Unit ( email )

Sejroegade 11
DK-2100 Copenhagen
Denmark
+45 39 17 38 31 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.rff.dk/organi/tt.htm

Danish National Institute of Social Research (SFI) ( email )

Herluf Trolles Gade 11
DK-1052 Kopenhagen
Denmark

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.cesifo.de

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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