Research Seminar

Cash Transfers and Violent Crime in Indonesian Communities – Krisztina Kis-Katos

17 Jan 2023


Krisztina Kis-Katos (University of Göttingen)


This study investigates the impact of Indonesia’s flagship anti-poverty program PKH on community-level violent crime. Exploiting data from a randomized controlled trial (RCT) and administrative data from PKH’s staggered nationwide roll-out in combination with different causal identification strategies, we show that the program led to an increase in violent crime in the country. Examining possible mechanisms, our analysis reveals that PKH resulted in an increase in idleness among non-targeted young men within beneficiary households, which we believe contributed to the rise in violent crime. In contrast, we show that the surge in violent crime is neither related to PKH increasing the (monetary and non-monetary) rewards for committing crime nor to alternative reductions in the (material, psychic, punishment-related) costs of engaging in crimes.


Elías Cisneros (University of Göttingen) – Krisztina Kis-Katos (University of Göttingen) – Jan Priebe (University of Hamburg) – Lennart. Reiners (University of Göttingen)


Hörsaal (A-032)