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Lessons from the Economics of CrimeWhat Reduces Offending?$
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Philip J. Cook, Stephen Machin, Olivier Marie, and Giovanni Mastrobuoni

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780262019613

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262019613.001.0001

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Organized Crime, Violence, and the Quality of Politicians: Evidence from Southern Italy

Organized Crime, Violence, and the Quality of Politicians: Evidence from Southern Italy

Chapter:
(p.175) 8 Organized Crime, Violence, and the Quality of Politicians: Evidence from Southern Italy
Source:
Lessons from the Economics of Crime
Author(s):

Paolo Pinotti

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262019613.003.0009

This paper examines the relationship between organized crime, violence and the quality of the political class in Italy. The main finding is that Mafia-affected regions exhibit abnormal spikes in the homicide rate during the electoral periods, relative to other regions. Greater violence before the elections is in turn associated with a lower quality of the political class, as reflected in the human capital of the appointed politicians and the probability that they are subsequently involved in scandals. These findings are interpreted in light of previous theoretical models of politicians’ capture by criminal organizations.

Keywords:   Organized crime, Elections, Politicians, Corruption

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