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date: 02 July 2022

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter addresses methods to study situational influences of setting characteristics on adolescent offending. In particular, it describes data collection methods (space-time budget interviews, census data, community surveys, and systematic social observations) that enable precise measurement of what respondents do, with whom they undertake these activities, and in what kind of places (both the geographical area and the function of the location) they find themselves. Such data capture presence in and exposure to different kinds of settings during particular periods in time. This chapter illustrates the usefulness of these method for criminological research by summarizing the results of three sub-studies from the Study of Peers, Activities, and Neighborhoods (SPAN) conducted in the Netherlands. It first discusses the design of the SPAN data collection and the instruments that were used in it. It then reviews each study in turn by summarizing its theoretical motivation, data structure, and analytical strategy, and by describing the main findings it has generated.

Keywords: environmental criminology, data collection, SPAN project, Netherlands, criminological research

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