Personal Indebtedness, Spatial Effects and Crime

Stuart McIntyre, Donald Lacombe

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paper

5 Citations (Scopus)
9 Downloads (Pure)


There is a long and detailed history of attempts to understand what causes crime. One of the most prominent strands of this literature has sought to better understand the relationship between economic conditions and crime. Following Becker (1968), the economic argument is that in an attempt to maintain consumption in the face of unemployment, people may resort to sources of illicit income. In a similar manner, we might expect ex–ante, that increases in the level of personal indebtedness would be likely to provide similar incentives to engage in criminality. In this paper we seek to understand the spatial pattern of property and theft crimes using a range of socioeconomic variables, including data on the level of personal indebtedness.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationGlasgow
PublisherUniversity of Strathclyde
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 22 May 2012


  • spatial econometrics
  • crime
  • personal debt
  • economic conditions


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