Leaders in Juvenile Crime
Carlos Díaz (),
Thierry Verdier and
Yves Zenou ()
No 13120, CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers
This paper presents a new theory of crime where leaders transmit a crime technology and act as a role model for other criminals. We show that, in equilibrium, an individual's crime effort and crime decisions depend on the geodesic distance to the leader in his or her network of social contacts. By using data on friendship networks among U.S. high-school students, we structurally estimate the model and find evidence supporting its predictions. In particular, by using a definition of a criminal leader that is exogenous to the network formation of friendship links, we find that the longer is the distance to the leader, the lower is the criminal activity of the delinquents and the less likely they are to become criminals. This result highlights the importance of the closeness centrality of the leaders in explaining criminal behaviors. We finally perform a counterfactual experiment that reveals that a policy that removes all criminal leaders from a school can, on average, reduce criminal activity by about 20% and the individual probability of becoming a criminal by 10%.
Keywords: closeness centrality; Crime leaders; criminal decision; social distance (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C31 D85 K42 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-law, nep-net, nep-soc and nep-ure
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: Track citations by RSS feed
Downloads: (external link)
CEPR Discussion Papers are free to download for our researchers, subscribers and members. If you fall into one of these categories but have trouble downloading our papers, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:13120
Ordering information: This working paper can be ordered from
http://www.cepr.org/ ... rs/dp.php?dpno=13120
Access Statistics for this paper
More papers in CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers Centre for Economic Policy Research, 33 Great Sutton Street, London EC1V 0DX.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by ().