Daly and Wilson (2001) – ‘Risk-taking, intrasexual competition, and homicide’, Nebraska Symposium on Motivation 47, 1-36.
Daly and Wilson’s study focuses on gender differences in criminal behaviour. Typically there is an 80/20 spilt between the males and females who are convicted of committing crimes.
There are many explanations offered for this unequal gender divide in crime, including evolutionary explanations and social explanations.
The study took place in Chicago which has around 77 different areas, all of which have varying levels of social and economic prosperity.
The research aimed to study and understand if there were any correlations between homicide rates and local life expectancy in Chicago.
The research was a correlational study which made use of several sources of information including:
- Local demographic records
- Survey data from Police Records
- School Records
Daly and Wilson studied Chicago’s local neighbourhoods where the males had lower than average life expectancy varying from 53.4 to 77.4 years. The researchers then used the data they collected to plot correlations.
There were strong negative correlations found between the male life expectancies and the differing neighbourhoods homicide rates.
The greater the absenteeism from school in the specific neighbourhoods, the lower the life expectancy.
Similarly, the greater the truancy rates in the specific neighbourhoods, the lower the life expectancy.
Daly and Wilson though it might possible that the men in the less affluent neighbourhoods may expect to live shorter lives and therefore take greater risks. Daly and Wilson partly blame the parents, claiming that as the parents also expect to live shorter lives they do not want to invest in their children and make sure they attend school. The researchers further add that an additional explanation of the findings could be to do with the varying levels of social and economic prosperity, they claim that those at the lower end of the scale believe they have nothing or less to lose, so they are more likely to be involved in risk taking.
+ The study collected mainly quantitative data and therefore is easy to analyse.
+ The study was very ethical.
– Ethnocentrism, the study only focused on Chicago.
– Methodology, the researchers use correlations, which while useful in identifying patterns, they cannot identify causal relationships.
- Daly and Wilson (2001) – ‘Risk-taking, intrasexual competition, and homicide’, Nebraska Symposium on Motivation 47, 1-36.