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date: 14 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Despite the serious policy implications of research on the influence of race and ethnicity on crime, definitions and measurements of these constructs vary across the major sources of crime data. Important generalizations can nonetheless be drawn. Overall, Native Americans, blacks, and Latinos are more likely to be affected by crime than are whites and Asians. There is much scholarly debate on the causes of these differences, partly centering on methodological differences between data sources. Two central issues—definitions and measurements of race and ethnicity in major crime data sources and the lasting effect of these methodological variations on theoretical explanations aimed at understanding their connection—need to be much better understood.

Keywords: race, ethnicity, crime, victimization

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