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Developmental Criminology and the Crime Decline
A Comparative Analysis of the Criminal Careers of Two New South Wales Birth Cohorts


Part of Elements in Criminology

  • Date Published: October 2020
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781108794794


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About the Authors
  • Throughout the 1990s many countries around the world experienced the beginnings of what would later become the most significant and protracted decline in crime ever recorded. Although not a universal experience, the so-called international crime-drop was an unpredicted and unprecedented event which now offers fertile ground for reflection on many of criminology's key theories and debates. Through the lens of developmental and life-course criminology, this Element compares the criminal offending trajectories of two Australian birth cohorts born ten years apart in 1984 and 1994. It finds that the crime-drop was unlikely the result of any significant change in the prevalence or persistence of early-onset and chronic offending, but the disproportionate disappearance of their low-rate, adolescent-onset peers. Despite decades of research that has prioritized interventions for at-risk chronic offenders, it seems our greatest global crime prevention achievement to date was in reducing the prevalence of criminal offending in the general population.

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    Product details

    • Date Published: October 2020
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781108794794
    • length: 75 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 150 x 5 mm
    • weight: 0.16kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    2. The 'Crime-Drop' through a Developmental Lens
    3. Data and Methodology
    4. Prevalence
    5. Frequency
    and Chronicity
    6. Onset
    7. Trajectories
    8. Young Women
    9. Indigenous Australians
    10. Conclusion.

  • Authors

    Jason L. Payne, Australian National University, Canberra

    Alexis R. Piquero, University of Miami and Monash University

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