We investigate the effect of drug-related violence in Mexico on academic achievement. We estimate the impact on math test scores of both turf war exposure and turf war persistence during the academic year. According to our results, both the exposure to and persistence of criminal violence reduces math test scores.
This paper assesses the Mexican government’s strategy to weaken drug-trafficking organizations (DTOs). Results show that arresting/executing drug cartel leaders and lieutenants increases not only DTO-related violence, but also civilian homicides.
We investigate the role of traditional governance institutions for public goods provision in Oaxaca, Mexico. Results show that communities ruled by traditional governance practices offer more effective provision of local public goods than equally poor communities ruled by political parties.
Using list experiments, this paper measures the prevalence of extortion and assistance among drug trafficking organizations (DTOs). Results show that territorial contestation among rival organizations produces more extortion, while monopoly control over a territory leads DTOs to provide more assistance. The paper also explores how variation in criminal organization and patterns of DTO-state collusion largely influence DTO behavior toward the community.
State interventions against organized criminal groups (OCGs) sometimes work to improve security, but often exacerbate violence. To understand why, this paper argues that the outcomes of police interventions are largely influenced by the pre-existing forms of governance OCGs establish in the territories they control.
We evaluate the effectiveness of the Mexican abandonment of the inquisitorial system of justice in reducing the incidence of torture of accused criminals. Results show that, despite rising levels of violence and cause for pessimism, the reform was able to reduce abuse across several measures.
This paper assesses the effects of body-worn cameras (BWC) on police behavior through a randomized control trial implemented in Rio de Janeiro. Results show that BWCs significantly reduced the use of lethal force and diminished the number of police written reports.
This study explores citizen perceptions of and victimization on private and public transportation in the Metropolitan Area of Mexico City. Particularly, this analysis exploits a unique survey to assess the likelihood of becoming a victim while using these means of transportation. Results show that victimization in the public transit system incentivize users to switch to private apps, such as Uber, Cabify, Lyft, etc.
Using a survey from 1,850 police officers across 11 municipalities in the Metropolitan Area of Monterrey, this study explores themes related to police perceptions of professionalization, performance, and community support. Our aim is to generate a more informed debate about the police situation in Nuevo León that gives voice to police officers. In particular, we focus on police officers’ patterns of interaction with citizens and criminal groups, their personal experiences with victimization, their views on changes in the security climate, and the challenges associated with transitioning from the old criminal justice system to the newly-reformed one.
This report analyzes the National Survey of Victimization and Perception of Public Security to further our understanding of the dynamics of police legitimacy. The report is divided into three parts. The first focuses on the national and state contexts of crime over time and their impact on individual experiences and attitudes toward crime. Part two analyzes citizen satisfaction with police, emphasizing in particular their perceptions of police ineffectiveness and corruption as well as their distrust of local and federal police forces. Finally, part three approaches police legitimacy and citizen cooperation with police by evaluating the impact of three policies related to police professionalization.
We conducted an impact evaluation of Youth with Hope (Jóvenes con Porvenir), the first large-scale vocational training program implemented in Mexico. Results indicate that participants increased their likelihood of finding a job; their reported monthly income; their number of hours worked per week; their access to professional networks; and their optimism about their future
The goal of this study is to explore themes related to public security using a large-scale, door-to-door survey of roughly 6,300 residents from Cidade de Deus, Providência, Rocinha, Batan, and Maré. Our aim is to generate a more informed debate about the security situation in Rio de Janeiro that gives voice to residents of the city’s favelas. In this survey, we explore favela residents’ patterns of interaction with the police and armed criminal groups, their experiences with victimization, their perceptions of changes in the security climate, as well as their evaluations of the UPP, the Military Police, and the public security situation in their communities.