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How does quality of governance influence occurrence of crime? A longitudinal analysis of Asian countries

Saleemi, Muhammad Waqar and Amir-ud-Din, Rafi (2019): How does quality of governance influence occurrence of crime? A longitudinal analysis of Asian countries.

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Though the theoretical relationship between governance quality and crime is clear, there is no clear understanding regarding the specific characteristics of governance quality which prevent crime. To be specific, which type of crime is affected by which aspect of the governance quality is not clear. We propose to take a set of Asian countries and analyze the effect of quality of governance on the crime rates in these countries during the period of 1984 to 2014. Quality of governance is proxied by a set of indicators which include government stability, corruption, accountability, socioeconomic conditions and law and order, internal conflict, external conflict, military in politics, investment profile, religious tensions, ethnic tensions and bureaucratic quality. The types of crime analyzed in this study include homicide, burglary, robbery and kidnapping. Some economic variables like poverty, income inequality, unemployment, GDP growth and per capita GDP are used to control for the effects of governance quality on crime. We estimate the relationship by applying fixed effect model and random effects model. We also use System Generalized Method of Moments (GMM) method to check the issues of endogeneity. The results showed that socioeconomic conditions, corruption, law and order, external conflict, investment profile and ethnic tensions are significantly related with different categories of crime such as homicides, robbery, kidnapping and burglaries. Among different economic variables, only per capita GDP and income inequality had a significant negative relationship with homicides.

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