Explaining Crime Hotspots

Peter K. B. St. Jean

in Pockets of Crime

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print November 2007 | ISBN: 9780226774985
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226775005 | DOI:
Explaining Crime Hotspots

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Over the last seven years, broken windows theory and collective efficacy theory have received increased attention from researchers and policymakers who seek to understand and address crime problems in society. This chapter discusses the fundamental logics of these two theories as they relate to the subject at hand: namely, why crimes occur more frequently in certain neighborhood locations than in others. It explains the various ways that data from the Wentworth Area Neighborhood Study support, explain, and challenge the fundamental claims of each theory. The chapter also proposes the concept of ecological disadvantage to extend each theory by resolving problems posed by their limitations and oversights.

Keywords: broken windows theory; collective efficacy theory; neighborhood crime; Wentworth; ecological disadvantage

Chapter.  10219 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Social Theory

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