Employment and Crime A Review of Theories and Research


This is a review and analysis of the literature on the relationships between employment and crime from several different disciplines: economics, sociology, anthropology and the recent body of manpower program evaluations for criminal justice populations. The review of economic literature focuses on two competing explanations of employment and crime relationships: the economic model of crime developed by neoclassical economists and the more structural approach of segmented labor market theorists. The review of sociological literature encompasses various third factors (family, education and age) that have been seen as qualifying the relationship between employment and crime. Structure of opportunity theory and sub-cultural literature related to employment and crime issues are also considered. Finally, surveys of early manpower program evaluations in a criminal justice context and recent major impact evaluations are reviewed.


Photo by Lucy Nicholson (REUTERS)

People in Jail and Prison in Spring 2021

Vera Institute of Justice (Vera) researchers collected data on the number of people in local jails and state and federal prisons throughout 2020 and into spring 2021. Vera researchers estimated the incarcerated population using a sample of approximately 1,600 jail jurisdictions, 50 states, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, the U.S. Marshals Service (U ...

  • Jacob Kang-Brown, Chase Montagnet, Jasmine Heiss
June 07, 2021