Benjamin Hansen

University of Oregon Website

Benjamin Hansen is the W.E. Miner Professor of Economics at the University of Oregon. He holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Voting History

Reducing gun violence

Taking into account both potential implementation challenges and expected efficacy, investing in police-led targeted enforcement directed at places and persons at high risk for gun crime (e.g.,\"hot spot\" policing; gang enforcement) would reduce gun violence.

Vote Confidence
Agree 7
Median Survey Vote Median Survey Confidence
Agree 7
Comments

In addition to the wealth of literature about police employment levels and violent crime, a recent paper by Chalfin, Laforest, and Kaplan forthcoming in JPAM studies targeted "gang takedowns" finding robust evidence they reduce local gang violence.

Taking into account both potential implementation challenges and expected efficacy, investing in police-led focused deterrence programs (clearly communicating “carrots and sticks” to local residents identified as high risk, followed by targeted surveillance and enforcement with some community-based support for those who desist from crime) would reduce gun violence.

Vote Confidence
Agree 7
Median Survey Vote Median Survey Confidence
Agree 6
Comments

Programs like this in NYC, evaluated by Sharkey, through RCTs, have been show to mainly affect technical violations among recent paroles, rather than reducing overall observed violence. However, such studies need to address the potential for competing risks in their evaluation designs. A working paper by Raphael and Skogg do find a targeted monitoring program in California, Armed and Prohibited Persons System (APPS), introduced in 2006 substantially reduced gun violence.

Taking into account both potential implementation challenges and expected efficacy, investing in purely community-led violence-interruption programs (community-based outreach workers try to mediate and prevent conflict, without police involvement) would reduce gun violence.

Vote Confidence
Neutral/No Opinion 5
Median Survey Vote Median Survey Confidence
Neutral/No Opinion 5
Comments

While some evaluations of Operation Cease-Fire have suggested they could have promise, replications and extensions have been far more mixed, and communities with said interventions have not shown long run reductions in violence and as youth homicides increased after initially dropping.

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