ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Does Development Lead to More Crimes?

A Report from Assam

The authors acknowledge the valuable comments offered by the anonymous referee. The views in this article are of the authors and do not reflect the views of the organisations with which they are associated.

It is widely accepted that enhancing various aspects of development such as education, health, and incomes contribute to reducing the frequency and intensity of crimes in society, since it increases the cost of engaging in crimes. Such a claim has been critically examined in this article by analysing the data about crime and development from Assam.

The relationship between crime and development has been a matter of continuous research in the social sciences. Most people agree that reducing crimes is an important goal to be achieved for any developing society. There seems to be a further agreement that improvements in various indicators of development such as education, health, and income help in reducing the rates and levels of crimes in society, since it raises the opportunity cost of committing crimes. 1 This is borne out by empirics in several studies. For example, the 2011 report of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) found that richer countries have far lower rates of violent crimes than poorer countries (as measured by the per capita gross domestic product [GDP]). Other studies have also arrived at similar conclusions.

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Published On : 20th Jan, 2024

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