CONCLUSIONS

Based upon our review of quantitative and qualitative studies of communities and crime that discuss both violent and nonviolent offending, we offer several conclusions. The present evidence suggests that only one category of community factors, social/physical disorder, is more consistently associated with violent than nonviolent crime. Multivariate analyses suggest that indicators of social disorder withstand the imposition of controls for concentrated disadvantage. The effects of measures of disorder on violence may be stronger than the effects on nonviolent crime when controls for concentrated disadvantage are applied, making disorder the best prospect among community-level measures reviewed in this chapter for a differential predictor of violence. The candidacy of social networks/collective efficacy as a differential predictor of violence remains intact after our review of the quantitative studies. In addition, qualitative evidence, and, indeed, broadly accepted conventional wisdom, suggests that local subcultural norms may have a significant impact on various types of criminal behavior in a crime-specific way. In particular, a subculture of violence has been linked to community violence in many ethnographic studies, and there is emerging evidence that distinct subcultural values for violence are distinguishable from those that favor other forms of criminal activity (such as drug dealing). This emergent evidence also suggests that subcultural values may interact with collective efficacy to determine how community members will react to crime, and this dynamic, in turn, is probably influenced by trust in the police and fear of violent retaliation.

 
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