NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Working Papers by David A. Weiner

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Working Papers

September 2009The Effects of School Desegregation on Crime
with Byron F. Lutz, Jens Ludwig: w15380
One of the most striking features of crime in America is its disproportionate concentration in disadvantaged, racially segregated communities, which has long raised concern that segregation itself may contribute to criminal behavior. Yet little is known about whether government efforts to reduce segregation can reduce crime. We address this question by studying the most important large-scale policy to reduce segregation in American life - court-ordered school desegregation. Our research design exploits variation across large urban school districts in the timing of when they were subject to local Federal court orders to desegregate. We find that for black youth, homicide victimization declines by around 25 percent when court orders are implemented; homicide arrests decline significantly as ...

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