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Longitudinal Data and Their Uses

Part of the Handbooks of Sociology and Social Research book series (HSSR)

In the 1980 s, criminologists began to consider much more seriously the importance of pursuing longitudinal research on how antisocial behavior develops over the life course. Although there were many proponents of such an attempt (Blumstein, Cohen, & Nagin, 1978; Blumstein, Cohen, Roth, & Visher, 1986; Farrington, Ohlin, & Wilson, 1986), the proposition was not without its critics (Gottfredson & Hirschi, 1986, 1987, 1988). These skeptics argued that the endeavor would be too expensive, both monetarily and in opportunity costs, to be justified and that little would be gained over traditional cross-sectional research. Nothing could have been farther from the truth.

Keywords

  • Antisocial Behavior
  • Longitudinal Research
  • Negative Life Event
  • Gang Member
  • Dichotomous Measure

These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Figure 3.1.

Notes

  1. 1.

    RYDS also includes Phase 3, which follows the G2 subjects into their early thirties, and a related intergenerational study, which follows the children of G2 subjects (G3 s) for 10 yearly waves of interviews.

  2. 2.

    Each tract’s resident arrest rate, not its crime rate, was used because there is a substantial gap between where crimes occur and where offenders live. The correlation between 1986 arrest rates and crime rates across all of Rochester’s census tracts was only 0.26. This assumes that risk for being an offender is more highly related to coming from a neighborhood with a high rate of active offenders than coming from an area with a large number of crimes.

  3. 3.

    This does not necessarily refer to adjacent waves.

  4. 4.

    The fixed effects are individual and wave. We estimated the model by including dummy variables in the regression equation for all but one individual and one wave. Wave was fixed in order to control for any maturation effects.

  5. 5.

    This is because the RYDS sample is comprised of youth from high-risk neighborhoods.

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Acknowledgment

Support for the Rochester Youth Development Study has been provided by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (86-JN-CX-0007, 95-JD-FX-0015, 96-MU-FX-0014, 2004-MU-FX-0062), the National Institute on Drug Abuse (R01-DA05512), and the National Science Foundation (SBR-9123299, SES-9123299). Work on this project was also aided by grants to the Center for Social and Demographic Analysis at the University at Albany from NICHD (P30-HD32041) and NSF (SBR-9512290).

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Lizotte, A.J., McDowall, D., Schmidt, N.M. (2009). Longitudinal Data and Their Uses. In: Krohn, M., Lizotte, A., Hall, G. (eds) Handbook on Crime and Deviance. Handbooks of Sociology and Social Research. Springer, New York, NY. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-0245-0_3

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