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Labour markets, public policies and crime: An empirical analysis

Bindler, AL; (2015) Labour markets, public policies and crime: An empirical analysis. Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access


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The thesis consists of six chapters. Chapter 1 is an introductory chapter. Chapter 2 is a survey of the literature on crime and labour markets. In that chapter, I discuss the seminal work that has been undertaken in that field of research and discuss the advances in the theoretical and empirical literature. Reviewing the literature, I identify open research questions. Some of these questions are addressed in subsequent chapters of this dissertation. Chapter 3 builds on the literature which provides evidence of long-term consequences for workers who first join the labour market during economic downturns. Using a range of data sources from the U.S. and UK, we demonstrate a substantial long-run effect of recessions on criminal behaviour: We find that youth who enter the labour market during recessions are significantly more likely to become criminal than those who graduate into a stronger labour market. Chapter 4 investigates the contemporaneous relationship between unemployment and crime in the context of increasing unemployment durations in the U.S. I employ quasi-experimental estimation techniques to study the impact of temporary unemployment benefit extensions on crime, and to establish the causal link between unemployment, unemployment durations and crime. The results support the hypothesis that the relationship between unemployment and crime depends on the duration of unemployment. Chapter 5 studies the impact of the stop-and-frisk policy in New York City as a policy that explicitly aims at crime deterrence. Using a range of data sources and quasi-experimental estimation techniques, we estimate the overall impact of the policy on crime in New York City. Further, we provide evidence that supports the hypothesis of racial bias and in particular claims that Afro-Americans face a disproportional probability of a stop-and-frisk encounter. Yet, our estimations suggest that there is no knock-on effect on crime. Chapter 6 is a concluding chapter.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: Labour markets, public policies and crime: An empirical analysis
Event: UCL (University College London)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Economics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1472813
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