Search Results

Title: Economic Issues in Crime Policy
Resulting in 1 citation.
1. Piehl, Anne Morrison
Economic Issues in Crime Policy
Ph.D. Dissertation, Princeton University, 1994
Cohort(s): NLSY79
Publisher: UMI - University Microfilms, Bell and Howell Information and Learning
Keyword(s): Current Population Survey (CPS) / CPS-Fertility Supplement; Delinquency/Gang Activity; Demography; Economics, Demographic; Incarceration/Jail; Labor Economics; Residence; Simultaneity

From 1980 to 1993, the number of inmates in state and federal prisons rose 200%. Throughout this expansion, the poorly-educated continued to be overrepresented among the nation's prisoners. At the same time, public concern about crime has also increased. Perhaps because immigrants share many demographic characteristics with criminals, public concern about immigration is often coupled with concern about crime. This dissertation empirically examines these issues central to sensible policy debate. Chapter one uses a unique micro-level data set of Wisconsin inmates to show that the completion of adult basic and high school education programs while in prison is significantly associated with lower recidivism. To correct for possible positive selection bias in these estimates, a variety of specifications are proposed and estimated. The results give no indication of significant selection bias. Chapter two looks directly at schooling and criminal justice outcomes by decomposing the relationship between education and incarceration into two subsidiary relationships: education and committing crime and education and conviction (conditional upon committing crime). Using Boston Youth Survey data on young males from low income neighborhoods, I find that additional years of schooling are associated with lower probabilities of both committing crime and of conviction. In a simultaneous model, the negative relationship between education and criminality remains statistically significant. Chapter three, written jointly with Kristin Butcher, investigates the relationship between immigration into a metropolitan area and that area's crime rate over the 1980's. Using data from the Uniform Crime Reports and the Current Population Surveys, we find, in the cross-section, that cities with high crime rates tend to have large numbers of immigrants. However, controlling for the demographic characteristics of the cities, recent immigrants appear to have no effect on crime rates. When we try to explain changes in the crime rate in a city over time, recent immigration again has no effect. In a secondary analysis of individual data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, we find that youth born abroad are statistically significantly less likely to be criminally active, based on a variety of measures. Implications of the empirical results for public policy are discussed throughout the dissertation.
Bibliography Citation
Piehl, Anne Morrison. Economic Issues in Crime Policy. Ph.D. Dissertation, Princeton University, 1994.