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The Abortion-Crime Link: Evidence from England and Wales

Leo Kahane (), David Paton and Rob Simmons ()
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Rob Simmons: Lancaster University Management School

Occasional Papers from Industrial Economics Division

Abstract: We use panel data from 1983 to 1997 for the 42 police force areas in England and Wales to test the hypothesis that legalizing abortion contributes to lower crime rates. We provide an advance on previous work by focusing on the impact of possible endogeneity of effective abortion rates with respect to crime. Our use of U.K. data allows us to exploit regional differences in the provision of free abortions to identify abortion rates. When we use a similar model and estimation methodology, we are able to replicate the negative association between abortion rates and reported crime found by Donohue and Levitt for the U.S. However, when we allow for the potential endogeneity of effective abortion rates with respect to crime, we find no clear connection between the two.

Keywords: abortion; crime; fertility (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I38 J13 K42 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2005
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-law, nep-reg and nep-ure
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (3)

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Related works:
Journal Article: The Abortion–Crime Link: Evidence from England and Wales (2008) Downloads
Working Paper: The abortion-crime link: evidence from England and Wales (2005) Downloads
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