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NCJ Number: 208227 Find in a Library
Title: Democracy and Organized Crime Activities: Evidence From 59 Countries
Journal: Security Journal  Volume:17  Issue:4  Dated:2004  Pages:21-34
Author(s): Hung-En Sung
Date Published: 2004
Page Count: 14
Type: Report (Study/Research) ; Survey
Format: Article - Designates individual journal articles: as published, reprinted, or online/electronic.
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: This comparative analysis of 59 countries focused on the association between various levels of the democratization process and organized crime activities as perceived by business executives.
Abstract: Fifty-nine countries participated in the 2000 Executive Opinion Survey conducted by the Center for International Development at Harvard University and the World Economic Forum. A total of 4,022 business executives were selected and surveyed in a random design stratified by economic sector, producing an average of 68 responses per country. The index of organized crime was constructed based on responses to the question regarding whether organized crime imposed significant costs and was a burden to businesses. The widely used political-rights index computed by the Freedom House was used to measure the level of citizens' right to vote and to be elected, as well as to become involved in other political activities. This provided the indicator of level of democracy. This study found that higher perceptions of victimization by organized crime were reported by business executives in moderately democratic countries compared with authoritarian societies and advanced democracies. This suggests that the easiest and quickest achievements of democratization, i.e., the expansion of political rights and free elections, are linked with growth opportunities for criminal syndicates; however, with progress toward further democratization, organized crime becomes the focus of control mechanisms by more complex liberal institutions such as a professional and independent judiciary and investigative journalism. Further, evidence from past studies indicates that since criminal syndicates exploit noncompetitive markets to develop monopolistic or oligopolistic influences through extortion, bid-rigging, price-fixing, bribery, or cartel agreements in particular industries, effective measures to encourage open and competitive markets are good anti-organized-crime policies. 3 tables, 1 figure, 32 notes, and appended listing of countries with democracy and organized-crime indexes for each country
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Cross cultural analyses; Economic influences; Organized crime; Organized crime causes; Political influences
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