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Why does education reduce crime?

Bell, Brian, Costa, Rui and Machin, Stephen (2018) Why does education reduce crime? CEP Discussion Papers (CEPDP1566). Centre for Economic Performance, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK.

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Abstract

Prior research shows reduced criminality to be a beneficial consequence of education policies that raise the school leaving age. This paper studies how crime reductions occurred in a sequence of state-level dropout age reforms enacted between 1980 and 2010 in the United States. These reforms changed the shape of crime-age profiles, reflecting both a temporary incapacitation effect and a more sustained, longer run crime reducing effect. In contrast to the previous research looking at earlier US education reforms, crime reduction does not arise solely as a result of education improvements, and so the observed longer run effect is interpreted as dynamic incapacitation. Additional evidence based on longitudinal data combined with an education reform from a different setting in Australia corroborates the finding of dynamic incapacitation underpinning education policy-induced crime reduction.

Item Type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)
Official URL: http://cep.lse.ac.uk/
Additional Information: © 2018 The Authors
Divisions: Centre for Economic Performance
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology
L Education > L Education (General)
JEL classification: I - Health, Education, and Welfare > I2 - Education
K - Law and Economics > K4 - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior > K42 - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law
Sets: Research centres and groups > Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)
Date Deposited: 11 Jan 2019 10:50
Last Modified: 29 Apr 2019 08:33
Funders: Economic and Social Research Council
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/91687

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