CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Friday, September 10, 2010

Brunton-Smith & Jackson on Neighborhood Clustering and the Fear of Crime

Ian Brunton-Smith and Jonathan Jackson  (University of Surrey - Department of Sociology and London School of Economics & Political Science - Methodology Institute) have posted Neighbourhood Clustering and the Fear of Crime: Examining Spatial Autocorrelation Using British Crime Survey Data (V. Ceccato, URBAN FABRIC OF CRIME AND FEAR, Springer, Forthcoming) on SSRN. Here is the abstract:

Neighbourhoods exert significant effects on public insecurities about crime: there is emerging evidence that structural characteristics, visual signs of disorder, and recorded crime all have direct and independent effects on individual level fear of crime. We contribute to this growing literature by drawing on data from a national probability sample of individuals in England and Wales. Linking these data to independent measures of neighborhood demographic characteristics, visual signs of disorder, and reported crime, we build upon recent evidence that neighbourhood characteristics influence worry about crime (and that individual differences in worry about crime are strongly moderated by neighborhood socio-economic characteristics). First, we address spatial autocorrelation; our findings point toward geographical spill-over effects. Second, we address issues of measurement; our findings point toward stronger effects of crime on fear of crime when measures of past frequency of worry are employed. The paper concludes with some thoughts on future directions of research. A fruitful way forward is to address the complex pattern of relationships existing between neighbourhood characteristics, perceptions of those neighbourhood characteristics, and fear of crime.

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