Volume 31 - Article 21 | Pages 625–658 Author has provided data and code for replicating results

Local determinants of crime: Do military bases matter?

By Alfredo Paloyo, Colin Vance, Matthias Vorell

Print this page  Facebook  Twitter

 

 
Date received:30 Sep 2013
Date published:16 Sep 2014
Word count:6678
Keywords:armed forces, deviant behavior, geographic information system, Germany
DOI:10.4054/DemRes.2014.31.21
Additional files:readme.31-21 (text file, 888 Byte)
 demographic-research.31-21 (zip file, 989 kB)
 

Abstract

Background: The majority of crime is committed by young men, and young men comprise the majority of the military-base population. The confluence of these two empirical regularities invites a scientific look at the contribution of a military base to criminal activity in ist geographic periphery.

Objective: We estimate the impact on criminal activity of the massive base realignments and closures that occurred in Germany for the period 2003-2007. In particular, we examine breaking and entering, automobile-related crime, violent crime, and drug-related crime.

Methods: We use a fixed-effect model to account for time-invariant unobservables in a panel of 298 military bases. We also take advantage of geographic information system software to mitigate issues arising from the spatial nature of the dataset.

Results: The estimates indicate that the base realignments and closures did not have a significant impact on criminal activity surrounding the base. Traditional correlates of crime remain statistically significant in our specifications.

Conclusions: Although crime is largely committed by young men, we find that the closure of military bases, which are staffed primarily by young men, does not have an impact on criminal activity. For matters of regional policy, we find that arguments pertaining to criminal activity generated by military bases are not supported by the data.

Comments: Economic well-being, as measured by real GNP and relative disposable income, is negatively associated with crime. Higher unemployment has a positive association. Regions with higher share of foreigners also have higher crime levels.

Author's Affiliation

Alfredo Paloyo - University of Wollongong, Australia [Email]
Colin Vance - Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Germany [Email]
Matthias Vorell - Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Germany [Email]

Most recent similar articles in Demographic Research

» Return intentions over the life course: Evidence on the effects of life events from a longitudinal sample of first- and second-generation Turkish migrants in Germany
Volume 39 - Article 38    | Keywords: Germany

» Same-sex relationship experiences and expectations regarding partnership and parenthood
Volume 39 - Article 25    | Keywords: Germany

» The influence of the number of siblings on expected family size in a cohort of young adults in Germany
Volume 39 - Article 10    | Keywords: Germany

» Intergenerational transmission of fertility timing in Germany
Volume 38 - Article 46    | Keywords: Germany

» On the normative foundations of marriage and cohabitation: Results from group discussions in eastern and western Germany
Volume 36 - Article 53    | Keywords: Germany