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Library Methodologies to Measure the Gender Dimensions of Crime and Violence

Methodologies to Measure the Gender Dimensions of Crime and Violence

Methodologies to Measure the Gender Dimensions of Crime and Violence

Resource information

Date of publication
August 2014
Resource Language
ISBN / Resource ID

Recent studies have used homicide rates,
police statistics, and crime victimization surveys to
pinpoint violent areas. The author argues that these useful
measures of crime, and violence underestimate certain types
of violence (especially non-economic violence) and key
dimensions of violence (especially age, and gender). A
composite index based on monitoring, and surveillance of
homicides, crime statistics, and victimization surveys can
provide invaluable "first round" snapshots of
urban violence - information to monitor crime trends, warn
against incipient crime waves, and indicate areas where more
in-depth "second round" studies are needed to
explore casualty, the impact of interventions, and public
opinion. But a composite index of municipally generated
information about trends, depends heavily on the quality of
the data collected, and will not explain why trends, or
changes occur. Other indicators are needed to strengthen
surveillance, and to facilitate the planning of
interventions, and evaluation. It would be helpful, for
example, to distinguish between social, economic, and
political violence, and to provide items on autopsy reports,
crime statistics, and victimization surveys to gain insight
into what motivates violence. Information useful for
analyzing causes of violence might include: 1) Individual:
socioeconomic data about victims, and perpetrators, and
information about their use of alcohol, drugs, or firearms.
2) Interpersonal: whether victim, and perpetrator belonged
to the same family, or household, had an affective
relationship, were acquaintances, or were strangers. 3)
Institutional: crime characteristics (physical injuries
sustained, weapons used, value of property lost, where crime
occurred); characteristics of victim, and perpetrator;
whether the crime was reported; per capita police, and
private security; presence of gangs in community; estimated
number of gangs and gang members; level of gang organization
(low, medium, high); and, other measures of social capital.
4) Structural: levels of impunity (number of convictions as
a ratio of number of arrests); levels of corruption; indices
of social exclusion, such as racism, gender discrimination,
or areas stigma; the dynamics between violence, and access
to (and control of) such resources as land, water, and
wealth. Crime mapping, to provide visual confirmation of
noted trends, might be combined with information about the
relative locations of battered women's shelters, police
stations, and the distribution of family violence in
residential areas.

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Authors and Publishers

Author(s), editor(s), contributor(s)

Shrader, Elizabeth

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