In recent decades the world has seen a simultaneous trend towards becoming more peaceful overall, but also towards higher homicide rates surging in focal regions in the developing world. Although abundant research exists on the nature and sociology of crime, few studies look into the damaging impact of crime and violence on the daily lives of affected communities. The present study proposes the use of societal-scale behavioral data—card transactions’ metadata—to elicit such impact. On the crime side, we use detailed homicide records for an entire middle-income country to identify salient crime shocks at the local level. On the behavioral side, we use debit card transaction volumes throughout the country to extract behavioral indices. We show that crime shocks have a substantial effect on communities’ consumption patterns. Moreover, we show that the effects of crime shocks distribute differently across population subgroups defined by gender and socioeconomic status— e.g., with reductions of up to 7% in females’ average volume of transactions—potentially exacerbating social inequalities. We conclude this work with policy recommendations on the use of ‘big data’ sources to monitor and help.
on the same topicVidéopublished in January 2021Evaluation documentpublished in December 2020Vidéopublished in December 2020Research documentpublished in November 2020Research documentPersistence of inequality in access to water: A look at the actions of women in peri-urban territories of the city of El Altopublished in November 2020Vidéopublished in August 2020
from the same collectionResearch documentpublished in March 2021Research documentpublished in February 2021Research documentpublished in February 2021Research documentpublished in December 2020Research documentpublished in December 2020Research documentInequality in Public Good Provision and Attitude Towards Taxation: Sub-national Evidence from Africapublished in November 2020