New Evidence on the Effects of Juvenile Incarceration on Crime Deterrence and Individual Outcomes
(Crime, Justice, and Drugs)
*Names in bold indicate Presenter
While studies of criminal justice system involvement suggest that incarceration might have criminogenic effects that outweigh reductions in crime due to deterrence, less is known about whether juvenile sanctions deter future crime in the population. Two of the papers on this panel present new, rigorous evidence of the deterrence effects of juvenile sanctions and estimates of the magnitude of deterrent effects.
For adults, factors that affect the likelihood of recidivism include the development of peer networks inside and outside of prison, substance abuse, and fewer opportunities for marriage which provides stability, support, and community (Visher & Travis, 2003). However being incarcerated, particularly at a young age, affects the likelihood that youth will make successful transitions to adulthood. The final two papers on the panel provide new evidence of the impact of juvenile incarceration on critical outcomes – academic effort, school dropout, and future offending – that are highly correlated with adult labor market participation, health, and well-being.
All four papers apply rigorous, quasi-experimental methods in criminology – regression discontinuity, instrumental variables, and panel difference-in-difference models. The panelists will discuss the results of the studies, policy implications for juvenile justice systems, and the advantages and disadvantages to the different estimation methods.