The perception of small crime

S. Douhou, J.R. Magnus, A.H.O. van Soest

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In this paper we measure perceptions of incorrect behavior or ‘small crime’, based on a questionnaire administered to a large representative sample from the Dutch population. In the questionnaire we ask the respondents to rate the severity or justifiability of a number of small crimes. We present short questions that only state the nature of the small crime, as well as vignette questions, describing in detail a fictitious person committing the small crime and other factors related to the circumstances in which the small crime is committed. We find that the perceived severity of small crimes varies systematically with characteristics of the respondent as well as of the person committing the crime. Also, the association between respondent characteristics and perceived seriousness changes if the respondents are given more information about the offender and the circumstances of the offense.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)749-763
JournalEuropean Journal of Political Economy
Volume27
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011

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