The Fear Drop

Marnix Eysink Smeets en Pim Foekens
Soort object
Although many countries have shown a distinct drop in crime over the last decades, the criminological literature suggests that fear of crime in those countries remained relatively stable. Research on this issue is sparse however, mostly confined to a single country, a few indicators and/or a relatively short timeframe. For this chapter 1,100 data series on fear of crime related items from (supra)national surveys were collected, covering 121 countries and more than 25 years (1989-2015). Using these data, a first prototype for an International Fear of Crime Trend Index was developed. Used on the five UN-regions with the highest average amount of data series per country, the index shows a pronounced fear drop in four of the five regions: all of them in Europe and the Anglo-Saxon countries. Explanations for these fear drops are hypothesized and directions for further research are formulated.