The Weight of Fear of Violence in Household Budgets

Published date01 December 2021
DOI10.1177/07340168211038382
Date01 December 2021
subjectMatterArticles
Article
The Weight of Fear of
Violence in
Household Budgets
Bruno Truzzi
1
, Marcelo Justus
1
, Henrique C. Kawamura
2
,
and Thomas V. Conti
3
Abstract
This article investigates the relationship between the perception of violence and the spending on
security goods and services in households. Individual microdata from a random national survey on
family budget carried out in Brazil in 2008-2009 were used for modeling the household spending
using two instrumental variables. The stability of results was checked by applying the Lasso-Gaussian
regularization method in the selection of the statistically significant variables. Positive relationships
were found between household spending on security goods and services and (i) the fear of insecurity
at the household level, (ii) the neighbors’ spending on security, and (iii) the registered criminality, but
no evidence was found on the relationship between the role of police on household spending on
security goods and services.
Keywords
fear, insecurity, crime, violence, household budget, Lasso-Gaussian regularization method
In the 2008–2018 ten-year period, there was an increase of approximately 14.4%in the homicide
rate in Brazil. In 2018, Brazil recorded 57,956 homicides, equivalent to a rate of 27.8 deaths per
100,000 population (Instituto de Pes quisa Econˆomica Aplicada-F ´orum Brasileiro de Seguranc¸a
P´
ublica [IPEA-FBSP], 2020). Not surprisingly, a large share of the Brazilian population declares
not feeling safe in their own homes (21%), around the perimeter of their neighborhood of residence
(33%), and on the perimeter of their municipality (47%), respectively (Instituto Brasileiro de
Geografia e Estat´ıstica [IBGE], 2010c).
The feeling of insecurity affe cts people’s daily decisions, wh ich changes their routines an d
impacts the configuration of the urban space. It is a well-known fact that demand for security in
Brazil is an indispensable item in the basket of goods and services consumed by households, which
1
Institute of Economics, University of Campinas, Brazil
2
Federal University for Latin American Integration, Foz do Iguac¸u, Brazil
3
Insper Education and Research Institute, Sa
˜o Paulo, Brazil
Corresponding Author:
Bruno Truzzi, Institute of Economics, University of Campinas, 353 Pit´
agoras Street, Bara
˜o Geraldo, Campinas, Sa
˜o Paulo
13083-857, Brazil.
Email: btruzzi13@gmail.com
Criminal Justice Review
ª2021 Georgia State University
Article reuse guidelines:
sagepub.com/journals-permissions
DOI: 10.1177/07340168211038382
journals.sagepub.com/home/cjr
2021, Vol. 46(4) 510–523

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