Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy)
Department of Economics
My dissertation examines how an increased minimum dropout age (MDA) affects juvenile crime not only in the community, but also in school. I first empirically estimate the magnitude of the impact of a higher MDA on high school enrollment. I then develop an economic model of crime that explains the relationship between an MDA and contemporaneous juvenile crime and empirically examine how a higher MDA affects juvenile crime both in the community and in school. I find that raising the MDA from 16 to 18 significantly increases school enrollment by 2.57%. Next, I find that raising the MDA to an age greater than 16 reduces crime in the community for individuals aged 16-to-18. Finally, I find that an MDA greater than 16 does not increase crime occurring in schools. These results indicate that increasing the MDA from 16 to 18 decreases community crime by 12% without affecting school crime. Although higher MDAs are primarily intended to increase the educational attainment for young adults, my findings highlight that a secondary impact is to reduce community crime.
Forhad, Md. Abdur Rahman, "Minimum Dropout Age and Juvenile Crime in the United States" (2019). Graduate Research Theses & Dissertations. 7038.
Northern Illinois University
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