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Title:The incapacitation effect of incarceration: Evidence from several Italian collective pardons PDF Logo
Authors:Barbarino, Alessandro
Mastrobuoni, Giovanni
Issue Date:2012
Series/Report no.:Discussion Paper series, Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit 6360
Abstract:We estimate the incapacitation effect on crime using variation in Italian prison population driven by eight collective pardons passed between 1962 and 1995. The prison releases are sudden - within one day -, very large - up to 35 percent of the entire prison population - and happen nationwide. Exploiting this quasi-natural experiment we break the simultaneity of crime and prisoners as in Levitt (1996) and, in addition, use the national character of the pardons to separately identify incapacitation from changes in deterrence. The elasticity of total crime with respect to incapacitation is between -20 and -35 percent. A cost-benefit analysis suggests that Italy's prison population is below its optimal level.
Subjects:crime
pardon
amnesty
deterrence
incapacitation
JEL:K40
K42
H11
Persistent Identifier of the first edition:urn:nbn:de:101:1-201206125745
Document Type:Working Paper
Appears in Collections:IZA Discussion Papers, Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit (IZA)

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