NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Partners in Crime: Schools, Neighborhoods and the Formation of Criminal Networks

Stephen B. Billings, David J. Deming, Stephen L. Ross

NBER Working Paper No. 21962
Issued in February 2016
NBER Program(s):Children, Economics of Education, Labor Studies

Why do crime rates differ greatly across neighborhoods and schools? Comparing youth who were assigned to opposite sides of newly drawn school boundaries, we show that concentrating disadvantaged youth together in the same schools and neighborhoods increases total crime. We then show that these youth are more likely to be arrested for committing crimes together – to be “partners in crime”. Our results suggest that direct peer interaction is a key mechanism for social multipliers in criminal behavior. As a result, policies that increase residential and school segregation will – all else equal – increase crime through the formation of denser criminal networks.

download in pdf format
   (407 K)

email paper

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w21962

Users who downloaded this paper also downloaded* these:
Blattman and Annan w21289 Can Employment Reduce Lawlessness and Rebellion? A Field Experiment with High-Risk Men in a Fragile State
Adao, Costinot, and Donaldson w21401 Nonparametric Counterfactual Predictions in Neoclassical Models of International Trade
Leeper w21822 Fiscal Analysis is Darned Hard
Heller, Shah, Guryan, Ludwig, Mullainathan, and Pollack w21178 Thinking, Fast and Slow? Some Field Experiments to Reduce Crime and Dropout in Chicago
Reinhart, Reinhart, and Trebesch w21958 Global Cycles: Capital Flows, Commodities, and Sovereign Defaults, 1815-2015
 
Publications
Activities
Meetings
NBER Videos
Themes
Data
People
About

National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138; 617-868-3900; email: info@nber.org

Contact Us