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The World of Crime

The World of Crime
Breaking the Silence on Problems of Security, Justice and Development Across the World

  • Jan Van Dijk - International Vicimology Institute, Tilburg University, The Netherlands

© 2008 | 456 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

In today's interdependent world, governments must become more transparent about their crime and justice problems. The World of Crime: Breaking the Silence on Problems of Security, Justice and Development Across the World seeks to break the "conspiracy of silence" regarding statistical information on these sensitive issues. It subsequently analyzes the macro causes of crime such as rapid urbanization, economic inequality, gender discrimination, abuse of alcohol, and drugs and availability of guns. Furthermore, the book analyzes the impact of crime on individuals and societies. Using a wealth of statistical information, the author underlines the need of greater international efforts to tackle transnational problems of crime.

Key Features
- Presents 13 chapters, which are organized in 4 main parts, that cover measurement challenges, common crimes, emerging global crimes, criminal justice, and international perspectives on crime and justice
- Contains statistical data taken from 2005 International Crime Victim Surveys
- Includes high quality figures such as scatter plots, graphs, and maps
- Features summary reviews and figure footnotes at the ends of each chapter

Intended Audience: The book is intended as a supplementary text for introduction to criminology, criminal justice, and comparative justice courses and is also appropriate for those professionally interested in security, criminal justice and development.

Chapter 1. The need of better crime diagnostics
The uses of international crime statistics  
International crime statistics: the sorry state of the art  
Crime as a social construct  
International crime statistics as controversial knowledge  
Twenty years of thwarted efforts  
ICVS: bringing the bad news  
Breaking the silence  
Summary points/in conclusion  
Chapter 2. Mismeasuring Crime
International crime figures available  
A crime is a crime ?  
Recording practices of the police  
Reporting patterns  
The breakthrough of crime victimization surveys  
Victim satisfaction and trust levels  
The more recorded crime, the less crime ?  
Police recorded crime and victimization rates compared  
Other uses of police recorded crime statistics  
Police figures as trend indicators  
A moratorium on police figures?  
The political context of crime surveying  
Summary points/in conclusion  
Chapter 3. The burden of property crime
Over all levels of crime  
Five year victimization rates  
Alternative measures of the crime burden  
Victimization by property crime  
Theft and frauds  
Consumer fraud  
Car crimes  
Car theft and joyriding  
Car hijacking  
The heavy crime burden of the business sector  
Costs for businesses  
Summary points/ in conclusion  
Chapter 4. Patterns of violent crime
National homicide rates  
Hate crimes in Western Europe  
Sexual assault/ rape  
Violence against women revisited  
Towards further standardization  
Child abuse and the cycle of violence  
Summary points/ in conclusion  
Chapter 5. Determinants of common crimes
Comparative perspectives  
Urbanization and crime  
Regional patterns and future trends of urbanization  
Demographics and crime  
Future demographic trends  
Affluence and crime  
Mass transportation and crime  
Patterns of vehicle theft at second sight  
More affluence-less crime?  
Development and crime revisited  
Poverty and inequality  
Criminal victimization and gender inequality  
Drugs and alcohol abuse  
Alcohol abuse and violence  
Trends in alcohol consumption  
Availability of guns  
Firearms and violent crime  
Guns and violence in developing countries  
Summary points/in conclusion  
Chapter 6. Global crime trends
Global trends in common crimes  
European trends in focus  
Trends in police recorded crimes  
Explaining the drop in crime  
Responsive securitization and the drop in crime  
The growing North-South security divide  
Crime and conflict  
Latin America: the price of democracy  
Summary points/in conclusion (part II)  
Chapter 7. Assessing organized crime
The new crime threats  
The changing nature of organized crime  
Illicit markets  
Defining organized crime  
Measurement issues  
The alternative of victimization surveys among the business community  
Towards an organized crime perception index  
Other “markers” of organized crime presence  
Instrumental violence  
The organized crime-corruption complex  
Other “markers” of organized crime: money-laundering and the black economy  
Composite organized crime index  
Country scores  
Trends in organized crime  
Participation of national organized crime groups in criminal markets  
Trafficking in persons  
Organized car theft  
The intercorrelates of crime  
Tentative transnational responses  
The US report on trafficking in persons  
Summary points/in conclusion  
Chapter 8. Other global security threats: corruption, terrorism and cyber crime
Defining corruption  
Corruption indicators : perceptions and experiences  
Assessing the merits of objective and subjective indicator  
Corruption victimizations in the corporate world  
Business crime surveys  
Patterns and trends in terrorist crimes  
The incidence of terrorism  
Correlates of terrorism  
Terrorism and organized crime  
Cyber crime : trends in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) crimes  
Computer-facilitated crime  
No Asian exception  
Computers, organized crime and terrorism  
Summary point/in conclusion: redrawing the global crime map  
Chapter 9. Law enforcement, crime prevention and victim assistance
Trends in criminal justice resources  
Allocation of resources to law enforcement and criminal justice  
Human resources for police and private security  
Police workloads  
The private security industry  
Trends in private policing  
More police-less crime?  
Homicide conviction rates as performance measure  
Towards a composite index for police performance  
Resources, performance and integrity  
Victim empowerment and support  
Victim reception by the police  
Trends in victim satisfaction  
Victim support services  
Implementing the UN Victims Declaration  
International best practices in crime prevention  
Guidelines for the prevention of crime  
Evidence-based approaches  
Planning and implementation  
Summary points/in conclusion  
Chapter 10. Courts and sentencing
Judges and magistrates  
Gender balance in the courts  
Perceived independence and integrity of the judiciary  
Towards an international code of conduct for judges  
Public attitudes towards sentencing  
In conclusion  
Chapter 11. Corrections: a global perspective
Trends in prisoners rates  
National prison populations  
Expanding use of imprisonement  
Interpreting prisoners rates  
Costs and limits of imprisonment  
The search for alternatives  
Benchmarking prisoners rates  
An index of punitiveness  
Summary points/in conclusion  
Chapter 12. Security, rule of law and sustainable development
Introductory remarks  
Legal institutions and the level of non-conventional crime  
Rule of law and terrorism  
Trafficking in persons and police performance.  
Good governance and development  
Good governance, development and the rule of crime  
Organized crime as Troian horse  
Vicious crimino-economic circles  
Summary points/in conclusion  
Chapter 13. Crime and justice: the need of global reform
Diagnosing crime  
A culture of lawfullness  
Country profiles at a glance  
Costs of crime: the global crime bill  
Lawfulness and human development  
The North- South ‘security divide’  
The ‘justice deficit’  
Security and justice reform first  
The UN Millenium Development Goals  
A more secure world  
Appendix A: Datasources and data
International Crime Victim Surveys (ICVS)  
Technical note on ICVS data presentation  
The International Crime Business Survey (ICBS)  
The International Violence Against Women Survey (IVAWS)  
The United Nations Survey on Crime Trends and the Operations of Criminal Justice Systems  
Definition of terms  
Some Other Techincal Matters  
Method for construction of composite indexes  
Method for constructing scatter plots  
Method for constructing bar charts  
Appendix B Data tables
Appendix B: Data tables

"This book is important for students who want to put domestic crime and justice issues and criminological theories in an international perspective....It is more than likely that this book will also interest all those who are professionally or privately interested in issues of crime, corruption, terrorism, law enforcement, criminal justice and sustainable development."

Johnson Thomas

Excellent coverage of the topic.

Dr Stephanie Bush-Baskette
Other, Rutgers University
November 5, 2011

Much of the content of this book will be useful across the MSc programme. In particular, the global perspective will be useful for a course aimed at the international market.

Ms Helen Poole
Social Science , Coventry University
July 15, 2010

Sample Materials & Chapters


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