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Course 2019-2020 a.y.

20687 - ECONOMIC ANALYSIS OF CRIME

Department of Social and Political Sciences

Course taught in English

Go to class group/s: 31

AFC (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/01)
Course Director:
PAOLO PINOTTI

Classes: 31 (II sem.)
Instructors:
Class 31: PAOLO PINOTTI


Suggested background knowledge

Students of all study programs are welcome to this class. The approach is quantitative, so a good knowledge of statistics and econometrics from introductory courses is recommended.


Mission & Content Summary
MISSION

The course introduces students to the economic analysis of crime. The analysis are based on the choice-theoretic model of crime. The empirical approach mainly focuses on causal relationships. The methods covered allows students to address questions that are relevant from a social and political perspective: Do longer prison sentences deter crimes? What are the economic costs of organized crime? What are the effects of immigration on crime? How can we detect and curb corruption? These are just examples of the type of questions that motivate this course. At the end of the course, students are able to go through the multiple stages of a research project on these topics.

CONTENT SUMMARY
  • The rational choice model of crime.
  • The evidence on the economic model of crime: Probability of arrest.
  • The evidence on the economic model of crime: Punishments.
  • The evidence on the economic model of crime: Legitimate income opportunities.
  • Immigration and crime.
  • Organized crime.
  • Corruption.
  • Tax evasion.
  • Drug policy.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILO)
KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING
At the end of the course student will be able to...
  • Understand research papers on crime-related issues.
  • Identify interesting research questions in the same field.
  • Develop and illustrate a research project.
APPLYING KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING
At the end of the course student will be able to...
  • Intepret previous evidence on the causes and consequences of crime.
  • Evaluate the impact of anti-crime policies.
  • Develop research projects in this field.

Teaching methods
  • Face-to-face lectures
  • Guest speaker's talks (in class or in distance)
  • Exercises (exercises, database, software etc.)
  • Group assignments
DETAILS
  • Guest speaker's talks (in class) by policy makers and practitioners involved in anti-crime policies.
  • Exercises (exercises, database, software etc.): practical applications using STATA.
  • Group assignments: preparation and presentation of a research proposal.

Assessment methods
  Continuous assessment Partial exams General exam
  • Written individual exam (traditional/online)
  •     x
  • Group assignment (report, exercise, presentation, project work etc.)
  •     x
    ATTENDING STUDENTS

    The final grade is based on written final exam and group presentations. Groups consisting of 3-4 students would be formed at the beginning of the course. Each group:

    • Discuss a paper among those included in the reference list.
    • Present a research project proposal at the end of the course.

    The final grade is determined as the maximum between:

    • The grade obtained in the final written exam; the weighted average of the final written exam (50%), the grade in the paper discussion (10%), and the presentation of the group project (40%).
    • Using this rule, problem sets and group presentations provide an insurance against having a bad day on the exam day.
    NOT ATTENDING STUDENTS

    The final grade is just the grade received in the final exam.


    Teaching materials
    ATTENDING AND NOT ATTENDING STUDENTS

    There is no textbook for this course but a list of paper is provided at the beginning of the course. All the material relevant for the final exam is covered in the slides used in class, which are posted on Bboard. Slides and your own notes should be your main reference, for this reason attendance in class is strongly recommended.

    Last change 06/06/2019 12:15