Work and Crime: An Exploration Using Panel Data
In this paper we explore the relationship between crime and work using data for a cohort sample of young men. We find that working and going to school significantly decrease the probability of committing criminal acts and by virtually identical amounts. Parochial school education and higher IQ are also significantly associated with lower criminal proclivities, but a high school degree has no significant effect. These findings, in conjunction with other research, suggest that participation in legitimate activities (employment or school) per se has a greater effect on criminal behavior than does the higher income associated with employment or educational attainment.