Education and Criminal Behavior: Insights from an Expansion of Upper Secondary School

56 Pages Posted: 12 Oct 2015

See all articles by Olof Aslund

Olof Aslund

IFAU - Institute for Labour Market Policy Evaluation; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Hans Gronqvist

Stockholm University

Caroline Hall

Uppsala University

Jonas Vlachos

Stockholm University - Department of Economics; Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN)

Abstract

We study the impact on criminal activity from a large scale Swedish reform of vocational upper secondary education, extending programs from two to three years and adding more general theoretical content. The reform directly concerns age groups where criminal activity is high and students who are highly overrepresented among criminal offenders. The nature of the reform and the rich administrative data allow us to shed light on several behavioral mechanisms. Our results show that the prolonged and more general education lead to a reduction in property crime, but no significant decrease in violent crime. The effect is mainly concentrated to the third year after enrollment, which suggests that being in school reduces the opportunities and/or inclinations to commit crime.

Keywords: education, delinquency

JEL Classification: K42

Suggested Citation

Aslund, Olof and Gronqvist, Hans and Hall, Caroline and Vlachos, Jonas, Education and Criminal Behavior: Insights from an Expansion of Upper Secondary School. IZA Discussion Paper No. 9374, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2672160

Olof Aslund (Contact Author)

IFAU - Institute for Labour Market Policy Evaluation ( email )

Box 513
751 20 Uppsala
Sweden
+46 18 471 70 89 (Phone)

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Hans Gronqvist

Stockholm University ( email )

Universitetsvägen 10
Stockholm, Stockholm SE-106 91
Sweden

Caroline Hall

Uppsala University

Box 513
Uppsala, 751 20
Sweden

Jonas Vlachos

Stockholm University - Department of Economics ( email )

Stockholm, 10691
Sweden

Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IFN) ( email )

Box 55665
Grevgatan 34, 2nd floor
Stockholm, SE-102 15
Sweden

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