Sunday, November 24, 2013

Criminology & Public Policy 12(2)

Criminology & Public Policy, May 2013: Volume 12, Issue 2


The Challenges of Screening DUI Offenders
Alan Cavaiola

Moving beyond BAC in DUI
Karen L. Dugosh, David S. Festinger and Douglas B. Marlowe


Criminal Justice and Public Health Policies to Reduce the Negative Impacts of DUI
William F. Wieczorek

Deterring DUI Behavior in the First Place
James C. Fell and Robert B. Voas

If I Had a Hammer, I Would Not Use it to Control Drunk Driving
Matthew DeMichele and Brian Payne


287(g) State and Local Enforcement of Immigration Law
Scott Akins

The Effects of Local Immigration Enforcement on Crime and Disorder
Christopher S. Koper, Thomas M. Guterbock, Daniel J. Woods, Bruce Taylor and Timothy J. Carter


The Need for Social Policies that Support the Revitalizing Effects of Immigration Rather than Law Enforcement Initiatives that Assume Disproportionate Immigrant Criminality
Matthew T. Lee

When Perception Is Reality
Terry Coonan


Encouraging Policy Makers and Practitioners to Make Rational Choices about Programs Based on Scientific Evidence on Developmental Crime Prevention
David P. Farrington

Valuing Developmental Crime Prevention
Matthew Manning, Christine Smith and Ross Homel


Enhancing the Quality of Stakeholder Assessments of Evidenced-Based Prevention Programs
Abigail A. Fagan

Enhancing Translational Knowledge on Developmental Crime Prevention
Christopher J. Sullivan

Building Efficient Crime Prevention Strategies
D. Max Crowley

Criminology 51(4)

Criminology, November 2013: Volume 51, Issue 4

Group Cohesiveness, Gang Member Prestige, and Delinquency and Violence in Chicago, 1959–1962
Lorine A. Hughes
Data from Short and Strodtbeck's study of gangs in Chicago, 1959–1962, are used to examine the association between intragang friendship networks and violent and delinquent behaviors among 248 boys from 11 different gangs (9 Black and 2 White). Contrary to expectations of tightly connected gangs being the most dangerous, estimates from multilevel overdispersed Poisson regression models showed significantly increased mean levels of violence among gangs with relatively low group cohesion. No relationship was observed between delinquency and gang cohesiveness, regardless of the specific network measure employed. At the individual level, popular boys were at a significantly increased risk for both delinquency and violence, suggesting a link between prestigious positions within the structure of gang friendship networks and conformity with group processes. The implications of these findings for detached worker intervention are discussed.

Does Economic Adversity Breed Criminal Cooperation? Considering the Motivation Behind Group Crime
Holly Nguyen and Jean Marie Mcgloin
The fact that most offenders have accomplices at some point in their criminal career is curious, given the risks associated with criminal cooperation. McCarthy, Hagan, and Cohen () offered the first formal theory of the decision to co-offend, which addressed explicitly the uncertainties attached to the decision to engage in group crime. They posited that when offenders experience adversity, they become more risk seeking and oriented toward the chance for potential gain, which essentially outweighs the uncertainties attached to criminal cooperation. McCarthy, Hagan, and Cohen's analysis of street youth offered some empirical support for their premise but left open many important questions. The current study uses data from two different samples of incarcerated felons in Nebraska (N = 321 offenders) and Colorado (N = approximately 1,120 observations nested within approximately 640 offenders) that provide information on different forms of economic adversity. Logistic regression models provide some evidence for the association between adversity and co-offending, but they are inconsistent. In contrast, a preference for excitement is a consistent and powerful predictor of offending.

High Times for Hate Crimes: Explaining the Temporal Clustering of Hate-Motivated Offending
Ryan D. King and Gretchen M. Sutton
This research explains the temporal clustering of hate crimes. It is hypothesized that many hate crimes are retaliatory in nature and tend to increase, sometimes dramatically, in the aftermath of an antecedent event that results in one group harboring a grievance against another. Three types of events are used to test and refine the argument: 1) contentious criminal trials involving interracial crimes, 2) lethal terrorist attacks, and 3) appellate court decisions concerning same-sex marriage. The results from time-series analyses indicate that contentious trial verdicts and lethal domestic terrorist attacks precede spikes in racially or religiously motivated hate crimes, whereas less evidence is found for antigay hate crimes after appellate court rulings that grant rights to same-sex partners. The model put forth in this article complements prior work by explaining in part the timing of hate crime clusters.

Situational Causes of Offending: A Fixed-Effects Analysis of Space–Time Budget Data
Wim Bernasco, Stijn Ruiter, Gerben J.N. Bruinsma, Lieven J.R. Pauwels and Frank M. Weerman
Situational theories of crime assert that the situations that people participate in contain the proximal causes of crime. Prior research has not tested situational hypotheses rigorously, either for lack of detailed situational data or for lack of analytical rigor. The present research combines detailed situational data with analytical methods that eliminate all stable between-individual factors as potential confounds. We test seven potential situational causes: 1) presence of peers, 2) absence of adult handlers, 3) public space, 4) unstructured activities, 5) use of alcohol, 6) use of cannabis, and 7) carrying weapons. In a two-wave panel study, a general sample of adolescents completed a space–time budget interview that recorded, hour by hour over the course of 4 complete days, the activities and whereabouts of the subjects, including any self-reported offenses. In total, 76 individuals reported having committed 104 offenses during the 4 days covered in the space–time budget interview. Using data on the 4,949 hours that these 76 offenders spent awake during these 4 days, within-individual, fixed-effects multivariate logit analyses were used to establish situational causes of offending. The findings demonstrate that offending is strongly and positively related to all hypothesized situational causes except using cannabis and carrying weapons.

The Unintended Consequences of Being Stopped Or Arrested: An Exploration of the Labeling Mechanisms Through Which Police Contact Leads to Subsequent Delinquency
Stephanie Ann Wiley, Lee Ann Slocum and Finn-Aage Esbensen
Much debate has taken place regarding the merits of aggressive policing strategies such as “stop, question, and frisk.” Labeling theory suggests that police contact may actually increase delinquency because youth who are stopped or arrested are excluded from conventional opportunities, adopt a deviant identity, and spend time with delinquent peers. But, few studies have examined the mechanisms through which police contact potentially enhances offending. The current study uses four waves of longitudinal data collected from middle-school students (N = 2,127) in seven cities to examine the deviance amplification process. Outcomes are compared for youth with no police contact, those who were stopped by police, and those who were arrested. We use propensity score matching to control for preexisting differences among the three groups. Our findings indicate that compared with those with no contact, youth who are stopped or arrested report higher levels of future delinquency and that social bonds, deviant identity formation, and delinquent peers partially mediate the relationship between police contact and later offending. These findings suggest that programs targeted at reducing the negative consequences of police contact (i.e., poor academic achievement, deviant identity formation, and delinquent peer associations) might reduce the occurrence of secondary deviance.

Transitory Mobility, Cultural Heterogeneity, and Victimization Risk Among Young Men of Color: Insights From an Ethnographic Study in Cape Town, South Africa
Marie Rosenkrantz Lindegaard, Jody Miller and Danielle M. Reynald
The coupling of racial and economic stratification has been found to result in a range of adverse outcomes for youth of color, including disproportionate exposure to violence and victimization. Primary explanations of these patterns, particularly at the micro-level, have focused on the impact of street culture. In this article, we draw from a multiyear ethnography in Cape Town, South Africa, to offer a theoretical elaboration of the place of culture in contributing to victimization risks among urban minority young men. The study is based on data collected from a sample of 26 young men of color who lived on the Cape Flats between 2003 and 2006. Using grounded theory methods, we suggest the import of unequal access to spatial mobility as a multifaceted means by which culture mediates young men's risks for victimization in disadvantaged communities. We find that transitory mobility—conceptualized as youth's temporary access to cultural spaces outside their segregated residential neighborhoods—is an important source of cultural heterogeneity in townships that can intensify the strength of local social identities and outgroup antipathies directed at those whose mobility is perceived as a cultural threat. Transitorily mobile young men's cultural repertoires are a key facet of street efficacy that can either insulate them from risk or heighten their vulnerabilities. Our findings are suggestive of important sources of variation in young men's victimization outcomes in disadvantaged communities, offering insights about factors that shape risks beyond those linked to the victim–offender overlap in high-risk settings.

The Social Ecology of Public Space: Active Streets and Violent Crime in Urban Neighborhoods
Christopher R. Browning and Aubrey L. Jackson
Drawing on one element of the discussion by Jacobs of the social control benefits of “eyes on the street,” this article explores the link between the prevalence of active streets and violence in urban neighborhoods. Three distinct data sources from the Project on Human Development in Chicago Neighborhoods are merged to explore the functional form and potential contingency of the active streets–violence relationship: 1) video data capturing the presence of people on neighborhood streets; 2) longitudinal data on adolescents (11 to 16 years of age) and their self-reports of witnessing severe violence; and (3) community survey data on neighborhood social organizational characteristics. The results from multilevel models indicate that the proportion of neighborhood streets with adults present exhibits a nonlinear association with exposure to severe violence. At low prevalence, the increasing prevalence of active streets is positively associated with violence exposure. Beyond a threshold, however, increases in the prevalence of active streets serve to reduce the likelihood of violence exposure. The analyses offer no evidence that the curvilinear association between active streets and violence varies by levels of collective efficacy, and only limited evidence that it varies by anonymity. Analyses of data on homicide and violent victimization corroborate these findings.

Social Science Research 43

Social Science Research, January 2014: Volume 43

Ethnic intermarriage in longitudinal perspective: Testing structural and cultural explanations in the United States, 1880–2011
Christoph Spörlein, Elmar Schlueter, Frank van Tubergen

The impact of local black residents’ socioeconomic status on white residents’ racial views
Marylee C. Taylor, Adriana M. Reyes

Family structure and the economic wellbeing of children in youth and adulthood
Leonard M. Lopoo, Thomas DeLeire

Life course transitions in early adulthood and SES disparities in tobacco use
Fred C. Pampel, Stefanie Mollborn, Elizabeth M. Lawrence

Same-sex cohabiting elders versus different-sex cohabiting and married elders: Effects of relationship status and sex of partner on economic and health outcomes
Amanda K. Baumle

Poverty dynamics, ecological endowments, and land use among smallholders in the Brazilian Amazon
Gilvan R. Guedes, Leah K. VanWey, James R. Hull, Mariangela Antigo, Alisson F. Barbieri

The social side of accidental death
Justin T. Denney, Monica He

Fundamental resource dis/advantages, youth health and adult educational outcomes
Cheryl Elman, Linda A. Wray, Juan Xi

Islam, religiosity, and immigrant political action in Western Europe
Aida Just, Maria Elena Sandovici, Ola Listhaug

Another health insurance gap: Gaining and losing coverage among natives and immigrants at older ages
Adriana M. Reyes, Melissa Hardy

The dimensions of mobilities: The spatial relationships between corporeal and digital mobilities
Sakari Taipale

The spatial context of the disorder–crime relationship in a study of Reno neighborhoods
Lyndsay N. Boggess, Jon Maskaly

What can we learn from twin studies? A comprehensive evaluation of the equal environments assumption
Jacob Felson

The ANNALS of the AAPSS 651

The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, January 2014: Volume 651


Detaining Democracy? Criminal Justice and American Civic Life
Vesla M. Weaver, Jacob S. Hacker, and Christopher Wildeman

How the Criminal Justice System Shapes Social Inequality and the Capacity of Citizens

The Degree of Disadvantage: Incarceration and Inequality in Education
Stephanie Ewert, Bryan L. Sykes, and Becky Pettit

Consequences of Family Member Incarceration: Impacts on Civic Participation and Perceptions of the Legitimacy and Fairness of Government
Hedwig Lee, Lauren C. Porter, and Megan Comfort

Parental Incarceration, Child Homelessness, and the Invisible Consequences of Mass Imprisonment
Christopher Wildeman

Incarceration and Social Inequality: Challenges and Directions for Future Research
Kristin Turney

How the Criminal Justice System Shapes Learning and Perceptions

The Criminal Justice System and the Racialization of Perceptions
Aliya Saperstein, Andrew M. Penner, and Jessica M. Kizer

The Psychological Dimensions and the Social Consequences of Incarceration
Jason Schnittker

Mass Imprisonment and Trust in the Law
Christopher Muller and Daniel Schrage

How the Criminal Justice System Educates Citizens
Benjamin Justice and Tracey L. Meares

Detention, Democracy, and Inequality in a Divided Society
Glenn C. Loury

How the Criminal Justice System Shapes Political Outcomes and Behaviors

Effects of Imprisonment and Community Supervision on Neighborhood Political Participation in North Carolina
Traci R. Burch

Staying out of Sight? Concentrated Policing and Local Political Action
Amy E. Lerman and Vesla Weaver

Do Voting Rights Notification Laws Increase Ex-Felon Turnout?
Marc Meredith and Michael Morse

Classes, Races, and Marginalized Places: Notes on the Study of Democracy’s Demise
Joe Soss

What Might the Future Hold

Ex-Felons’ Organization-Based Political Work for Carceral Reforms
Michael Leo Owens

Locked In? Conservative Reform and the Future of Mass Incarceration
David Dagan and Steven M. Teles

Civics Lessons: How Certain Schemes to End Mass Incarceration Can Fail
Eric Cadora

Closing Comments on Criminal Justice and American Civic Life

Democracy and the Carceral State in America
Marie Gottschalk

Criminal Justice Processing and the Social Matrix of Adversity
Robert J. Sampson

Incarceration, Inequality, and Imagining Alternatives
Bruce Western

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Theory and Society 42(6)

Theory and Society, November 2013: Volume 42, Issue 6

Social stratification in transitional economies: property rights and the structure of markets
Andrew G. Walder , Tianjue Luo & Dan Wang
In transitions from state socialism, property rights are re-allocated to organizations and groups, creating new markets and new forms of economic enterprise that reshape the stratification order. A generation of research has estimated individual-level outcomes with income equations and mobility models, relying on broad assumptions about economic change. We redirect attention to the process of economic change that structures emerging markets. The process varies across market sectors, depending on the entity that is granted rights formerly exercised by state organs, and on the combination of rights they are granted. The transformation of three sectors in China—agriculture, steel manufacturing, and real estate—shows how different allocations of property rights alter the stratification order in strikingly different ways. Historical analysis of the evolution of markets and enterprises integrates insights from economic sociology into research on social stratification, providing a structural perspective on transitions from state socialism.

Limited liability and its moral hazard implications: the systemic inscription of instability in contemporary capitalism
Marie-Laure Djelic & Joel Bothello
The principle of limited liability is one of the defining characteristics of modern corporate capitalism. It is also, we argue in this article, a powerful structural source of moral hazard. Engaging in a double conceptual genealogy, we investigate how the concepts of moral hazard and limited liability have evolved and diffused over time. We highlight two parallel but unconnected paths of construction, diffusion, moral contestation, and eventual institutionalization. We bring to the fore clear elective affinities between both concepts and their respective evolution. Going one step further, we suggest that both concepts have come to be connected through time. In the context of contemporary capitalism, limited liability has to be understood, we argue, as a powerful structural source of moral hazard. In conclusion, we propose that this structural link between limited liability and moral hazard is an important explanatory factor of the systemic instability of contemporary capitalism and, as a consequence, of a pattern of recurrent crises that are regularly disrupting our economies and societies.

The peculiar convergence of Jeffrey Alexander and Erik Olin Wright
Mustafa Emirbayer & Molly Noble
Jeffrey Alexander and Erik Olin Wright are among the leading sociologists of their generation. Each has published his magnum opus in the past several years: The Civil Sphere (Alexander) and Envisioning Real Utopias (Wright). This paper—a dual review essay—lays out the core arguments of each work; situates each within the personal and intellectual contexts of its production; and critically assesses each in terms of its contributions to sociological theory and research. It also argues that the works converge (unexpectedly, given Alexander’s intellectual origins in neo-functionalism and Wright’s in neo-Marxism) upon a common intellectual position, that of Deweyan pragmatism. It tries to make sense of Alexander’s and Wright’s peculiar dual voyage in a Deweyan direction and offers some reflections as to what that journey might tell us about social theory and political thought today.

Think tanks, free market academics, and the triumph of the right
Fred Block
These two books address different dimensions of the triumphal rise of free market ideas. Thomas Medvetz analyzes the emergence of think tanks as a new organizational form in the United States and explains why they have effectively reduced the influence of most academic intellectuals on policy making. Angus Burgin analyzes the emergence and history of the Mont Pèlerin Society—the free market group that was founded by Friedrich Hayek—which had a decisive influence on conservative thought.

Journal of Quantitative Criminology 29(4)

Journal of Quantitative Criminology, December 2013: Volume 29, Issue 4

Estimating the Causal Effect of Gun Prevalence on Homicide Rates: A Local Average Treatment Effect Approach
Tomislav Kovandzic , Mark E. Schaffer & Gary Kleck
Objectives: This paper uses a “local average treatment effect” (LATE) framework in an attempt to disentangle the separate effects of criminal and noncriminal gun prevalence on violence rates. We first show that a number of previous studies have failed to properly address the problems of endogeneity, proxy validity, and heterogeneity in criminality. We demonstrate that the time series proxy problem is severe; previous panel data studies have used proxies that are essentially uncorrelated in time series with direct measures of gun relevance. Methods: We adopt instead a cross-section approach: we use US county-level data for 1990, and we proxy gun prevalence levels by the percent of suicides committed with guns, which recent research indicates is the best measure of gun levels for crosssectional research. We instrument gun levels with three plausibly exogenous instruments: subscriptions to outdoor sports magazines, voting preferences in the 1988 Presidential election, and numbers of military veterans. In our LATE framework, the estimated impact of gun prevalence is a weighted average of a possibly negative impact of noncriminal gun prevalence on homicide and a presumed positive impact of criminal gun prevalence. Results: We find evidence of a significant negative impact, and interpret it as primarily “local to noncriminals”, i.e., primarily determined by a negative deterrent effect of noncriminal gun prevalence. We also demonstrate that an ATE for gun prevalence that is positive, negative, or approximately zero are all entirely plausible and consistent with our estimates of a significant negative impact of noncriminal gun prevalence. Conclusions: The policy implications of our findings are perhaps best understood in the context of two hypothetical gun ban scenarios, the first more optimistic, the second more pessimistic and realistic. First, gun prohibition might reduce gun ownership equiproportionately among criminals and noncriminals, and the traditional ATE interpretation therefore applies. Our results above suggest that plausible estimates of the causal impact of an average reduction in gun prevalence include positive, nil, and negative effects on gun homicide rates, and hence no strong evidence in favor of or against such a measure. But it is highly unlikely that criminals would comply with gun prohibition to the same extent as noncriminals; indeed, it is virtually a tautology that criminals would violate a gun ban at a higher rate than noncriminals. Thus, under the more likely scenario that gun bans reduced gun levels more among noncriminals than criminals, the LATE interpretation of our results moves the range of possible impacts towards an increase in gun homicide rates because the decline in gun levels would primarily occur among those whose gun possession has predominantly negative effects on homicide.

Heterogeneity in the Frequency Distribution of Crime Victimization
Tim Hope & Paul A. Norris
Tests the idea that the frequency distribution typically observed in crosssectional crime victimization data sampled from surveys of general populations is a heterogeneously distributed result of the mixing of two latent processes associated, respectively, with each of the tails of the distribution. Methods: Datasets are assembled from a number of samples taken from the British Crime Survey and the Scottish Crime Victimization Survey. Latent class analysis is used to explore the probable, latent distributions of individual property crime and personal crime victimization matrices that express the frequency and type of victimization that are self-reported by respondents over the survey recall period. Results: The analysis obtains broadly similar solutions for both types of victimization across the respective datasets. It is demonstrated that a hypothesized mixing process will produce a heterogeneous set of local sub-distributions: a large sub-population that is predominantly not victimized, a very small ‘chronic’ sub-population that is frequently and consistently victimized across crime-type, and an ‘intermediate’ sub-population (whose granularity varies with sample size) to whom the bulk of victimization occurs. Additionally, attention is paid to the position of very high frequency victimization within these sub-populations. Conclusions: The analysis supports the idea that crime victimization may be a function of two propensities: for immunity, and exposure. It demonstrates that zero-inflation is also a defining feature of the distribution that needs to be set alongside the significance that has been attached to the thickness of its right tail. The results suggest a new baseline model for investigating population distributions of crime victimization.

The Incapacitation Effect of First-Time Imprisonment: A Matched Samples Comparison
Hilde Wermink , Robert Apel , Paul Nieuwbeerta & Arjan A. J. Blokland
Objectives: The logic of incapacitation is the prevention of crime via the forced removal of known offenders from the community. The challenge is to provide a plausible estimate of how many crimes an incarcerated individual would have committed, were s/he free in the community rather than confined in prison. The objective of this study is to provide estimates of the incapacitation effect of first-time imprisonment from a sample of convicted offenders. Methods: The data are official criminal records of all individuals convicted in The Netherlands in 1997. Two different analytical strategies are used to estimate an incapacitation effect. First, the offending rate of the imprisoned individuals prior to their confinement in 1997 provides a “within-person counterfactual”. Second, imprisoned offenders are paired with comparable non-imprisoned offenders using the method of propensity score matching in order to estimate a “between-person counterfactual”. Incapacitation estimates are provided separately for juvenile imprisonment (ages 12–17) as well as adult imprisonment (ages 18–50), and for male and female offenders. Results: The best estimate is that 1 year of incarceration prevents between 0.17 and 0.21 convictions per year. The use of additional data sources indicates that this corresponds to between roughly 2.0 and 2.5 criminal offenses recorded by the police. Conclusions: The current results suggest that, insofar as imprisonment is used with the primary goal of reducing crime through incapacitation, a general increase in the use of incarceration as the sanction of choice is not likely to yield major crime control benefits.

The Effect of Incarceration on Re-Offending: Evidence from a Natural Experiment in Pennsylvania
Daniel S. Nagin & G. Matthew Snodgrass
Objectives: This paper uses a sample of convicted offenders from Pennsylvania to estimate the effect of incarceration on post-release criminality. Methods: To do so, we capitalize on a feature of the criminal justice system in Pennsylvania—the county-level randomization of cases to judges. We begin by identifying five counties in which there is substantial variation across judges in the uses of incarceration, but no evidence indicating that the randomization process had failed. The estimated effect of incarceration on rearrest is based on comparison of the rearrest rates of the caseloads of judges with different proclivities for the use of incarceration. Results: Using judge as an instrumental variable, we estimate a series of confidence intervals for the effect of incarceration on one year, two year, five year, and ten year rearrest rates. Conclusions: On the whole, there is little evidence in our data that incarceration impacts rearrest.

Prisons and Crime, Backwards in High Heels
William Spelman
Objectives: Prisons reduce crime rates, but crime increases prison populations. OLS estimates of the effects of prisons on crime combine the two effects and are biased toward zero. The standard solution—to identify the crime equation by finding instruments for prison—is suspect, because most variables that predict prison populations can be expected to affect crime, as well. An alternative is to identify the prison equation by finding instruments for crime, allowing an unbiased estimate of the effect of crime on prisons. Because the two coefficients in a simultaneous system are related through simple algebra, we can then work backward to obtain an unbiased estimate of the effect of prisons on crime. Methods: Potential instruments for crime are tested and used to identify the prison equation for the 50 U.S. states for the period 1978–2009. The effect of prisons on crime consistent with this relationship is obtained through algebra; standard errors are obtained through Monte Carlo simulation. Results: Resulting estimates of the effect of prisons on crime are around −0.25 ± 0.15. This is larger than biased OLS estimates, but similar in size to previous estimates based on standard instruments. Conclusions: When estimating the effect of a public policy response on a public problem, it may be more productive to find instruments for the problem and work backward than to find instruments for the response and work forward.

Crime & Delinquency 59(8)

Crime & Delinquency, December 2013: Volume 59, Issue 8

Community and Campus Crime: A Geospatial Examination of the Clery Act
Matt R. Nobles, Kathleen A. Fox, David N. Khey, and Alan J. Lizotte
Despite the provisions of the Clery Act, which requires institutional reporting of crime on college campuses, patterns of campus crime have received surprisingly little research attention to date. Furthermore, few studies have described the extent to which college students engage in criminal behaviors. This study examines the criminality of students and nonstudents on the campus of a large southeastern university. To assess the effectiveness of the Clery Act, the data were mapped to identify geospatial patterns of offending on and off campus. Results illustrate important patterns of crime both on and off campus, involving both students and nonstudents. Also, multivariate analyses suggest that several factors are consistently predictive of on-campus and student arrests. Policy implications and suggestions for future research based on these findings are discussed.

Assessing the Mediation of a Fuller Social Learning Model on Low Self-Control’s Influence on Software Piracy
George W. Burruss, Adam M. Bossler, and Thomas J. Holt
Researchers have explored the empirical validity of linking key concepts from Gottfredson and Hirschi’s general theory of crime and Akers’ social learning theory. Much of this research, however, has neither included measures of differential reinforcement and imitation nor operationalized the social learning process as a second-order latent construct as supported by Akers and other scholars. Thus, in this study, the authors used structural equation modeling to examine both the direct effect of low self-control and its indirect effect via a fuller measure of the social learning process on software piracy to improve our understanding of this specific phenomenon and to also provide further insight on the empirical validity of linking concepts from these two theories. They found that the indirect effect of self-control via the social learning process on piracy was greater than its direct effect. In addition, as levels of low self-control increased, the probability of software piracy actually decreased when controlling for the social learning process.

Offender Perceptions of Graduated Sanctions
Eric J. Wodahl, Robbin Ogle, Colleen Kadleck, and Kenneth Gerow
Finding credible alternatives to revocation for offenders who violate the conditions of their community supervision has emerged as a salient issue in the corrections field. A number of jurisdictions have turned to graduated sanctions as an alternative to revocation. This study addresses one of the major gaps in the research on graduated sanctions by examining perceptions of graduated sanction severity through the administration of surveys to offenders under active supervision. Survey results revealed several important findings. First, offenders do not view jail as being substantially more punitive than community-based sanctions such as community service or electronic monitoring. Second, offenders viewed treatment-oriented sanctions as being more punitive than other graduated sanctions. Third, offender perceptions of graduated sanctions were influenced by a variety of individual characteristics such as gender, age, and education level.

The Impact of Security Placement on Female Offenders’ Institutional Behavior
Renée Gobeil, Kelley Blanchette, and Meredith Robeson Barrett
It has been argued that institutional misconduct is promulgated by the correctional environments associated with different security levels. In this article, the authors summarize the results of a study examining whether such an association was present among Canadian federally sentenced female offenders. A total of 964 security reviews of federally sentenced women were analyzed to determine the independent effects of assessed risk (on the basis of individual-level factors) and security placement on institutional behavior. The analyses revealed that institutional behavior was related to assessed risk, after controlling for the effect of security placement. No relationship between security placement and misbehavior remained after controlling for assessed risk. Together, these findings suggest that although individual-level variables influence behavior, security placement does not.

Implications of Different Outcome Measures for an Understanding of Inmate Misconduct
Benjamin Steiner and John Wooldredge
Quantitative studies geared toward understanding differences among prison inmates in their odds of committing rule infractions have grown over the last decade but with little consistency in the models examined, especially regarding the types of rule violations examined. These differences have, in turn, contributed to an increasingly complex picture of inmate misconduct that appears counterproductive for both theory and practice. The study described here was designed to assess the ramifications of examining different outcome measures for quantitative analyses of the subject. Findings revealed that three of the nine models examined produced unique information regarding the effects of various inmate predictors, including the models of physical assaults (on inmates and/or staff), drug/alcohol use, and other nonviolent misconduct. Analyses also uncovered several new substantive findings on the topic. Findings are discussed in light of their relevance for practice as well as theories of inmate behavior.

Criminal Offending and Learning Disabilities in New Zealand Youth: Does Reading Comprehension Predict Recidivism?
Julia J. Rucklidge, Anthony P. McLean, and Paula Bateup
Sixty youth (16-19 years) from two youth prison sites participate in a prospective study examining criminal offending and learning disabilities (LD), completing measures of estimated IQ, attention, reading, and mathematical and oral language abilities. Prevalence rates of LDs exceed those of international studies, with 91.67% of the offenders showing significant difficulties in at least one area of achievement (defined as 1 SD or more below the normative mean), the mean reading comprehension score falling at the 4th percentile. Four years post assessment, recidivism rates among released youth (n = 51) are investigated. After the investigators control for other known risk factors (including delinquency and estimated IQ), reading comprehension predicts future offending across measures, capturing rate, seriousness, and persistence of offending post release.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Journal of Criminal Justice 41(6)

Journal of Criminal Justice, November 2013: Volume 41, Issue 6

Exploring the Variation in Drug Selling Among Adolescents in the United States 
Jeffrey J. Shook, Michael G. Vaughn, Christopher P. Salas-Wright
This study explores the variation in adolescent drug sellers
Three groups were found: Dabblers, delinquents, and externalizers
Different factors are associated with each adolescents drug selling group
Interventions need to focus on these factors in seeking to disrupt drug dealing behavior

The relationship between injustice and crime: A general strain theory approach
Heather L. Scheuerman
Various types of injustice differentially predict the intention to engage in crime.
Two forms of injustice are sufficient to promote criminal coping.
The relationship between injustice and crime is mediated by situational anger.
Intending to use violence is associated with procedural and distributive injustice.
Excessive drinking is influenced by interactional and distributive injustice.

Reconciling questions about dichotomizing variables in criminal justice research
Anne-Marie R. Iselin, Marcello Gallucci, Jamie DeCoster
We address unresolved questions about dichotomization in criminal justice research.
Using continuous variables is a better alternative to dichotomization.
This is true with non-normal distributions and when testing non-linear relations.
It is also true when probing interaction effects and theorizing about subgroups.

Similarities and differences between perceptions of peer delinquency, peer self-reported delinquency, and respondent delinquency: An analysis of friendship dyads
Ryan C. Meldrum, John H. Boman IV
Peer self-reported delinquency doesn’t reflect respondent reports of peer delinquency.
Perceptions of peer delinquency largely reflect respondent self-reported delinquency.
Peer self-reported delinquency is distinct from respondent self-reported delinquency.

In and out of prison: Do importation factors predict all forms of misconduct or just the more serious ones?
Glenn D. Walters, Gregory Crawford
Examined 6 importation factors as predictors of prison and community misconduct.
Importation variables predicted high/high-moderate severity infractions and crimes.
Importation variables did not predict moderate severity infractions and crimes.
Importation model as relevant to community adjustment as to prison adjustment.
Importation part of a more general theoretical construct of criminal propensity.

Prison O Glorious Prison
Matt DeLisi

Do drug courts reduce the use of incarceration?: A meta-analysis
Eric L. Sevigny, Brian K. Fuleihan, Frank V. Ferdik
We present a meta-analysis examining the effects of drug courts on incarceration.
Meta-regression is used to examine the influence of key drug court moderators.
Drug courts reduce the incidence of subsequent incarceration.
Drug courts do not reduce the aggregate amount of time that offenders spend behind bars.

Gender as social threat: A study of offender sex, situational factors, gender dynamics and social control
Stephanie Bontrager Ryon
The study examines the relationship between gender and adjudication withheld.
Adjudication withheld allows offender to escape the label 'convicted felon'.
Women are more likely to receive adjudication withheld than men.
Women convicted of 'atypical' crimes are most likely to get adjudication withheld.
Changing gender dynamics do not weaken the effect of gender on the outcome.

Rational choice beyond the classroom: Decision making in offenders versus college students
Jeffrey A. Bouffard, M. Lyn Exum
Tests of rational choice theory often utilize undergraduate student samples.
This reliance on student samples raises questions regarding external validity.
A rational choice survey was given to undergraduates and incarcerated offenders.
The groups’ perceived consequences of crime and decisional processes were similar.
Students appear to provide valid insight into the decisions of known criminals.

Preventing Crime is Hard Work: Early Intervention, Developmental Criminology, and the Enduring Legacy of James Q. Wilson
Brandon C. Welsh, David P. Farrington

Dark Knights Rising: The Aurora Theater and Newtown School Massacres and Shareholder Wealth
Benjamin W. Cross, Stephen W. Pruitt
Both Aurora theater and competitors show strongly negative changes in stock prices
Major non-US theater companies showed no reaction to the Aurora shooting
Smith and Wesson (maker of the Aurora weapon) showed no reaction to the shooting
Ruger showed gains in share prices at the time of the Aurora massacre
Smith & Wesson and Ruger both fell dramatically at the time of the Newtown shooting

How well do dynamic needs predict recidivism? Implications for risk assessment and risk reduction
Michael S. Caudy, Joseph M. Durso, Faye S. Taxman
Static risk is a robust predictor of recidivism across the two study samples.
Antisocial peers, education/employment, antisocial attitudes, and substance abuse significantly correlated with recidivism.
Risk prediction is better served by static risk factors.
Informing risk reduction requires assessment of dynamic needs.
Clearly defining risk/need assessment goals is essential in criminal justice practice.

A national population based examination of the association between age-versatility trajectories and recidivism rates
Shachar Yonai, Stephen Z. Levine, Joseph Glicksohn
Tests competing theories of juvenile offending on subsequent recidivism.
Examine the age-versatility curve pre-first-conviction and recidivism association.
Trajectory modeling identified specialization and versatility groups.
Cox models show that pre-conviction high-stable-versatility increased recidivism.
Results were generally consistent with the taxonomic theory of crime.

American Journal of Sociology 119(1)

American Journal of Sociology, July 2013: Volume 119, Issue 1

Defense against Recession: U.S. Business Mobilization, 1950–1970
Todd Schifeling
The unexpected investment decisions of companies during recessions often frustrate commentators and policy makers who view the economy from the top down. Companies may act against immediate market signals during recessions because of uncertainties about strategy and the future direction of the economy. A mesolevel sociological model of how firms interpret and respond to economic conditions in uncertain times improves understanding of firms’ variable responses to recessions, which cumulatively shape macroeconomic trajectories. Examining firm-level employment during four recessions from 1950 to 1970, the author generates results from dynamic panel models to show that firms set their employment levels against profits and market share and in alignment with peers and political affiliations. Firms manage uncertainty by imitating peers but also by endeavoring to construct their environment collectively through business associations. This article’s counterintuitive economic findings and the evidence of social and political influences reinforce the importance of careful investigation into how firms respond to recessions.

The Effects of U.S. Immigration on the Career Trajectories of Native Workers, 1979–2004
Jeremy Pais
While earlier work primarily examines the point-in-time effects of immigration on the earnings of native workers, this article focuses more broadly on the effects of immigration on native workers’ career trajectories. Cross-classified multilevel growth-curve models are applied to 1979 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth and U.S. Census Bureau data to demonstrate how people adjust to changing local labor market conditions throughout their careers. The key findings indicate that substitution and complementary effects depend on the stage of the worker’s career. At entry into the labor market, high levels of immigration have a positive effect on the career paths of young native-born adults. However, negative contemporaneous effects to natives’ earnings tend to offset positive point-of-entry effects, a finding that suggests job competition among natives is greater in areas of high immigrant population concentration. These results raise questions about whether foreign-born workers need to be in direct competition with natives for there to be substitution effects.

Funding Immigrant Organizations: Suburban Free Riding and Local Civic Presence
Els de Graauw, Shannon Gleeson, and Irene Bloemraad
The authors argue that taken-for-granted notions of deservingness and legitimacy among local government officials affect funding allocations for organizations serving disadvantaged immigrants, even in politically progressive places. Analysis of Community Development Block Grant data in the San Francisco Bay Area reveals significant inequality in grants making to immigrant organizations across central cities and suburbs. With data from 142 interviews and documentary evidence, the authors elaborate how a history of continuous migration builds norms of inclusion and civic capacity for public-private partnerships. They also identify the phenomenon of “suburban free riding” to explain how and why suburban officials rely on central city resources to serve immigrants, but do not build and fund partnerships with immigrant organizations in their own jurisdictions. The analysis affirms the importance of distinguishing between types of immigrant destinations, but argues that scholars need to do so using a regional lens.

Social Organization, Collective Sentiment, and Legal Sanctions in Murder Cases
Eric P. Baumer and Kimberly H. Martin
The traditional “jurisprudential model” of law views the application of legal sanctions primarily as a function of the facts of the case and the rules that govern the proceedings. Sociology of law scholars have challenged this model on theoretical grounds, arguing persuasively that law is variable and often yields patterns that parallel broader considerations of community social organization and collective sentiment. The authors' analysis yields evidence that the certainty and severity of sanctions for murder cases are heightened where social capital is more plentiful, religious fundamentalist values more prevalent, and support for punitive sanctions is greater. They also find that sentences given to murder defendants are longer in areas in which the public expresses higher levels of fear. Overall, the findings provide provocative evidence that legal outcomes in murder cases are influenced by several features of the social environments in which they are processed.

Mate Selection in Cyberspace: The Intersection of Race, Gender, and Education
Ken-Hou Lin and Jennifer Lundquist
In this article, the authors examine how race, gender, and education jointly shape interaction among heterosexual Internet daters. They find that racial homophily dominates mate-searching behavior for both men and women. A racial hierarchy emerges in the reciprocating process. Women respond only to men of similar or more dominant racial status, while nonblack men respond to all but black women. Significantly, the authors find that education does not mediate the observed racial preferences among white men and white women. White men and white women with a college degree are more likely to contact and to respond to white daters without a college degree than they are to black daters with a college degree.

The Embeddedness of Adolescent Friendship Nominations: The Formation of Social Capital in Emergent Network Structures
Kenneth A. Frank, Chandra Muller, and Anna S. Mueller
Although research on social embeddedness and social capital confirms the value of friendship networks, little has been written about how social relations form and are structured by social institutions. Using data from the Adolescent Health and Academic Achievement study and the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, the authors show that the odds of a new friendship nomination were 1.77 times greater within clusters of high school students taking courses together than between them. The estimated effect cannot be attributed to exposure to peers in similar grade levels, indirect friendship links, or pair-level course overlap, and the finding is robust to alternative model specifications. The authors also show how tendencies associated with status hierarchy inhering in triadic friendship nominations are neutralized within the clusters. These results have implications for the production and distribution of social capital within social systems such as schools, giving the clusters social salience as “local positions.”

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Social Problems 60(4)

Social Problems, November 2013: Volume 60, Issue 4

Surviving the Great Recession: Growing Need and the Stigmatized Safety Net
Jennifer Sherman
Based on qualitative research, this article looks at the impacts of the Great Recession on low-income and poor families, focusing on their challenges and survival strategies in the wake of the downturn. For many individuals who have lost their jobs, work has long been an important source of pride and social standing, and letting go of this identity is often difficult and wrought with ambivalence and a sense of failure, contributing to multiple outcomes that include social isolation, self-esteem and mental health problems, and most problematically, unwillingness to fully utilize the available social safety net. This article investigates the ways in which the stigma associated with dependency in the American context contributes to the material and emotional suffering of vulnerable individuals and families as they weather the recession and its long, slow recovery.

Regulatory Rescaling in Neoliberal Markets
Josh Pacewicz
Neoliberal reforms substitute “self-regulating” markets for political coordination, but are often accompanied by an expansion of the state. Scholars argue that this is because market-facilitating regulations increase. Through a mixed-methods study of two urban production economies, I show that political actors also make markets through regulatory rescaling—intervention that suppresses market coordination in one arena to enable it in another. Local owners once used price competition and gift exchange to coordinate localized aspects of production, but many of their firms were acquired by larger corporations. Corporate subsidiaries lack the place-specific knowledge and relationships necessary to coordinate production with local owners. City-appointed development personnel solve this problem by rescaling the urban market: they provide firms with services and information that local owners once got from one another, thereby laying the foundations for national corporate competition and undercutting remaining owners’ ability to coordinate localized aspects of production themselves.

From the Outside In: Crossing Boundaries to Build Collective Identity in the New Atheist Movement
Katja M. Guenther, Kerry Mulligan and Cameron Papp
This article presents an analysis of collective identity formation within an organization that is part of the new atheist movement to illuminate how a nascent social movement organization successfully builds collective identity through the construction of permeable boundaries. The organization delineates clear boundaries from outsiders so that it can foster collective identity among its members. Group processes that take place within the social movement organization facilitate collective identity formation through contrast to an abstracted and maligned other and through inclusion of former outsiders, namely the formerly religious. In fact, those who cross the boundary between atheists and religious believers make core contributions to supporting boundary maintenance within the organization. The analysis evidences the importance of boundary permeability for understanding collective identity.

Chicano Gang Members in Recovery: The Public Talk of Negotiating Chicano Masculinities
Edward Orozco Flores and Pierrette Hondagneu-Sotelo
Using ethnographic data from Los Angeles, this article examines the ritualized forms of verbal communication used in two Chicano gang recovery programs, Homeboy Industries and Victory Outreach. These two distinctive programs facilitate recovery from gangs through contrasting models of communication anchored in religion and therapeutic rehabilitation. In recovery, ritualized verbal displays subordinate gang masculinity and elevate conventional notions of masculinity. Former gang members use sermons, group therapy, 12-step programs, and personal testimonials to articulate hegemonic ideals of masculinity, such as responsible fatherhood. A critical component of these gang rehabilitation programs rearticulates the meanings of Chicano masculinity to include abstaining from drug use, providing for family members, and engaging in nurturing behavior. Through these verbal rituals, reformed gang masculinity is repositioned as dominant, desirable, and accessible to marginalized Chicano men with past gang affiliations and addictions.

Race, Space, and the Spread of Violence Across the City
Elizabeth Griffiths
A central explanation for elevated violence in urban African American neighborhoods is that the relationship can be accounted for by race-related differences in socioeconomic conditions. Yet recent studies have shown that predominantly African American neighborhoods experience higher rates of violence relative to other ethno-racial communities, even when socioeconomic conditions can be held constant. Explanations for these differences center on the deleterious effects of extensive residential segregation and the existing racial order privileging whites and their communities. This study examines whether the concentration and spread of urban violence can be characterized as a racially invariant process over half a century. In a detailed case study of the prototypical “rustbelt” city of Buffalo, New York, between the 1950s and the 1990s, negative binomial regression analyses fail to support the racial invariance thesis for predicting intra-neighborhood homicide rates. Multinomial logit regression models show that racial composition is also associated with vulnerability to inclusion in a cluster of highly violent neighborhoods as homicide diffused across the city, especially in recent decades. Thus, the spatial organization of urban African American neighborhoods generates a unique racialized vulnerability to the extralocal diffusion of violence; there is, in effect, an ecological racial variance in the spread of violence across the city. Moreover, this process has become increasingly entrenched over time, undermining any assertion that the urban experience reflects a post-racial America.

A Multilevel Examination of Neighborhood Social Processes and College Enrollment
Mark T. Berg, Eric A. Stewart, Endya Stewart and Ronald L. Simons
Previous sociological research on the neighborhood context of youth educational attainment has focused almost exclusively on the effects of neighborhood compositional features. There is limited empirical information about the social processes that may explain why neighborhood disadvantage affects college enrollment decisions. Drawing on William Wilson’s (1987) framework and recent theorizing in urban sociology, we examine hypotheses about the explanatory role of neighborhood cultural heterogeneity in affecting college enrollment. We test three hypotheses derived from this literature using original data from a multilevel longitudinal sample of African American adolescents. Results revealed that cultural heterogeneity is an important neighborhood social process that affects adolescents’ decisions about college, particularly in disadvantaged neighborhoods. We discuss the implications of the findings with regard to future empirical and theoretical research on neighborhood effects and youth attainment.