NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Education, Work, and Crime: A Human Capital Approach

Lance Lochner

NBER Working Paper No. 10478
Issued in May 2004
NBER Program(s):   LS   CH

This paper develops a model of crime in which human capital increases the opportunity cost of crime from foregone work and expected costs associated with incarceration. Older, more intelligent, and more educated adults should commit fewer street (unskilled) crimes. White collar crimes decline less (or increase) with age and education. Predictions for age-crime and education-crime relationships receive broad empirical support in self-report data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth and arrest data from the Uniform Crime Reports. The effects of education, training, and wage subsidies, as well as enforcement policies on criminal behavior are discussed.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w10478

Published: Lochner, Lance. "Education, Work And Crime: A Human Capital Approach," International Economic Review, 2004, v45(3,Aug), 811-843.

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