- The Oxford Handbooks in Criminology and Criminal Justice
- The Oxford Handbook of Offender Decision Making
- Editors’ Introduction
- Rational Choice Theory, Heuristics, and Biases
- Evolutionary Approaches to Rational Choice
- Multiple Interpretations of Rationality in Offender Decision Making
- Situational Crime Prevention and Offender Decision Making
- Biosocial Criminology and Models of Criminal Decision Making
- Perceptual Deterrence
- Game Theory
- Dual-Process Models of Criminal Decision Making
- Personality and Offender Decision Making: The Theoretical, Empirical, and Practical Implications for Criminology
- Temporal Discounting, Present Orientation, and Criminal Deterrence
- The Role of Moral Beliefs, Shame, and Guilt in Criminal Decision Making: An Overview of Theoretical Frameworks and Empirical Results
- Neural Mechanisms of Criminal Decision Making in Adolescence: The Roles of Executive Functioning and Empathy
- Social Learner Decision Making: Matching Theory as a Unifying Framework for Recasting a General Theory
- Victim Selection
- Co-offending and Co-offender Selection
- Informal Guardians and Offender Decision Making
- Police and Offender Choices: A Framework
- Crime Location Choice: State of the Art and Avenues for Future Research
- High Stakes: The Role of Weapons in Offender Decision Making
- The Effect of Alcohol and Arousal on Criminal Decision Making
- Emotions in Offender Decision Making
- Experimental Designs in the Study of Offender Decision Making
- Observational Methods of Offender Decision Making
- Understanding Offender Decision Making Using Surveys, Interviews, and Life Event Calendars
- Simulating Crime Event Decision Making: Agent-Based Social Simulations in Criminology
- Modeling Offender Decision Making with Secondary Data
- “Deciding” to Kill: Understanding Homicide Offenders’ Decision Making
- Cold-Blooded and Badass: A “Hot/Cool” Approach to Understanding Carjackers’ Decisions
- The Reasoning Sex Offender
- Burglary Decisions
- Offender Decision Making in Corporate and White-Collar Crime
- Organized Crime and Protection Rackets
Abstract and Keywords
Consequentialist theories of criminal decision making assume crime is a choice that one undertakes if the perceived benefits of the act outweigh its costs. This a priori assessment of costs and benefits involves the use of several neurological components, including the amygdala–striatal system and the prefrontal cortex. Crime is commonly committed by individuals under the influence of alcohol and/or experiencing heightened states of emotional arousal. Both alcohol and arousal impact neurological functioning, including that of the amygdala–striatal system and prefrontal cortex. This chapter examines the influence of alcohol and arousal on criminal decision making from a neuroeconomic perspective. It discusses the neurological effects that alcohol and arousal may have on the identification and evaluation of criminal consequences. These effects bound one’s rationality and increase the likelihood of criminal/aggressive behavior. Empirical research on alcohol, arousal, and criminal decision making is summarized, and suggestions for future research are presented.
M. Lyn Exum is Associate Professor in the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. His research interests include criminal decision making and the forces that impact those cognitive processes.
Lauren A. Austin is a doctoral student in the Public Policy program at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Her research interests include at-risk youth, resiliency, and the history of North Carolina’s public health policies. She is currently completing her dissertation on the risk and protective factors of resilient at-risk youth.
Justin D. Franklin is a graduate of the Master of Science program in Criminal Justice at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. His interests include rehabilitation strategies that target juvenile offenders.
Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.
If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.