The cost of crime project


In 2017, more than 63,880 people were killed in homicides in Brazil. This equates to roughly 7 violent death per hour and sets an unprecedented record of violent crime in the country. In the 2017 Latinobarometer, 44% of Brazilians reported to have been victim of crime and fear of crime and public security rank high as concerns in Brazil and other countries in Latin America. 



In this project we provide novel estimates on the economic and social cost of crime using cutting edge econometric techniques on large sets of administrative microdata from Brazil. We are particularly interested in documenting the cost of crime so far neglected in the literature and are absent from official cost estimates and often hidden for policy makers. Unique access to georeferenced crime data allows us to investigate the spatial dimension of exposure to crime and violence on a number of outcomes, including education, health, house prices and political outcomes.


We have access to a unique set of high quality administrative microdata on violence and crime from Brazilian government agencies. We combine the information on crime with administrative data on economic performance, educational outcomes, health realizations, outcomes of political processes among other.

We use information on the location of homicides in the public way to obtain the precise geocoordinates of incidents of crime over time. We display these on our Homicide Map, documenting the occurrence of all homicides in the public way in Brazil over time and across space at an unprecedented level of geographic precision.