Ethnic Minorities, Social Integration and Crime

  • Josine Junger-Tas


This article first discusses various dimensions of the social integration of minorities into society. The Netherlands is taken as an example, although research from other countries (such as the US and Sweden) is also taken into consideration. Useful concepts in this regard include the level to which these groups have social, informative and cultural capital that can help them to integrate into the dominant society. The second part considers the theoretical links between integration and criminal behaviour. The author assumes that the fundamental causal processes that lead to the development of criminality and other negative behaviour are independent of country of origin, ethnic group or the country of residence. In other words – that these processes, as they emerge in social control theory, have a universal character. In the second place, she assumes that differences in crime between ethnic groups are linked to group differences in socio-economic integration in the host country and in culture-related variables. Furthermore, there are also differences in the criminality of allochtonous youth within ethnic groups. These are similarly assumed to be linked to differences in commitment to social institutions such as family and school and to differences in accepting specific Western norms and values.

antisocial behaviour ethnic minorites integration policies neighbourhoods social control theory 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Josine Junger-Tas
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.E.M. Meijers InstituteUniversity of LeidenThe Netherlands
  2. 2.School of Forensic Science and CriminologyUniversity of LausanneThe HagueThe Netherlands

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