Education and crime: What we know and where do we go?

Joel Carr, Olivier Marie, Suncica Vujic

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademic


There is a growing consensus that increasing education quantity and/or improving its quality can be a very efficient crime reducing policy tool. This is despite that fact that, due to numerous identification and data challenges, empirical evidence is still somewhat limited and, especially, comes to different conclusions depending on type of education and target group studied. In this chapter, we review research developments in economists' investigation of the causal relationship between education and crime over the past two decades. We highlight why various methods generate different findings in different contexts as for example when it comes to the heterogeneity in effects found across race and gender. We also discuss future research directions that could improve our understanding of the mechanisms at play in this complex relationship to optimize education policy making to reduce crime in the short and long run.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationA modern guide to the economics of crime
EditorsPaolo Buonanno, Paolo Vanin, Juan Vargas
PublisherEdward Elgar Publishing
ISBN (Electronic)9781789909333
ISBN (Print)9781789909326
Publication statusPublished - 14 Oct 2022


  • education
  • crime
  • policy
  • identification
  • Heterogeneous effects


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