Home > Publications . Search All . Browse All . Country . Browse PSC Pubs . PSC Report Series

PSC In The News

RSS Feed icon

Kusunoki, Hall, and Barber find obese teen girls less likely to use birth control

Prescott finds reported sex offenses lower in neighborhoods with resident sex offenders

Geronimus says poor Detroiters face greater health risks given adverse social conditions

Highlights

Bob Willis awarded 2015 Jacob Mincer Award for Lifetime Contributions to the Field of Labor Economics

David Lam is new director of Institute for Social Research

Elizabeth Bruch wins Robert Merton Prize for paper in analytic sociology

Elizabeth Bruch wins ASA award for paper in mathematical sociology

Next Brown Bag

PSC Brown Bags will be back fall 2015


Explaining the Relationship Between Employment and Juvenile Delinquency

Publication Abstract

Staff, Jeremy, D. Wayne Osgood, John E. Schulenberg, Jerald Bachman, and Emily E. Messersmith. 2010. "Explaining the Relationship Between Employment and Juvenile Delinquency." Criminology, 48(4): 1101-1131.

Most criminological theories predict an inverse relationship between employment and crime, but teenagers' involvement in paid work during the school year is correlated positively with delinquency and substance use. Whether the work–delinquency association is causal or spurious has been debated for a long time. This study estimates the effect of paid work on juvenile delinquency using longitudinal data from the national Monitoring the Future project. We address issues of spuriousness by using a two-level hierarchical model to estimate the relationships of within-individual changes in juvenile delinquency and substance use to those in paid work and other explanatory variables. We also disentangle the effects of actual employment from the preferences for employment to provide insight about the likely role of time-varying selection factors tied to employment, delinquency, school engagement, and leisure activities. Whereas causal effects of employment would produce differences based on whether and how many hours respondents worked, we found significantly higher rates of crime and substance use among nonemployed youth who preferred intensive versus moderate work. Our findings suggest the relationship between high-intensity work and delinquency results from preexisting factors that lead youth to desire varying levels of employment.

DOI:10.1111/j.1745-9125.2010.00213.x (Full Text)

PMCID: PMC3062908. (Pub Med Central)

Country of focus: United States of America.

Browse | Search : All Pubs | Next