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6 Social, Physical, and Digital Infrastructure for Public Safety
Pages 64-70

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From page 64...
... He conducts social experiments to understand why urban street violence and shootings, ethnic violence, riots, and civil war violence exist and to determine which interventions successfully reduce this violence. During his time in Africa, Blattman identified both ineffective and effective programs to mitigate violence.
From page 65...
... Thus, as his research revealed, any intervention to address violence should target the individuals at highest risk of violence, and effective treatment begins with an appropriate diagnosis. For example, people in cities commonly fire a weapon for one of the following reasons: reactive aggression, vengeance and blood feuds amid a lack of justice options, strategic creation of a powerful reputation to prevent attack, optimal response to opponents of uncertain strength, and as a byproduct of illicit transactions and competitions for territory.1 Blattman noted that many interventions are well supported by evidence, and each addresses a different underlying cause.
From page 66...
... A quasi-experimental study revealed 20 percent fewer assaults, 39 percent fewer gun assaults, and 16 percent fewer nuisance crimes around ordinance-compliant houses and revealed no evidence of displacement of crime to nearby areas.3 These findings were replicated in a subsequent randomized trial. Second, he said that, starting in 1996, the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society LandCare Program4 began to clean up trash from, plant trees and grass in, and add fences around abandoned vacant lots that were often 2 J
From page 67...
... 6.3 USING OPERATIONS RESEARCH TO INCREASE ACCESS TO HOUSING FOR HOMELESS YOUTH Renata Konrad, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, explained that traffickers prey on and exploit vulnerable populations such as runaway and homeless youth (RHY) : 20 percent of all homeless youth are trafficked for sex or labor.
From page 68...
... In response to a question about the linearity of the mathematical model, Konrad noted that because not every service will be 100 percent effective, the benefits are not linear, but the model takes that into account. 6.4 DISCUSSION Birge asked the presenters to share examples of organizations that are doing effective social outreach.
From page 69...
... For example, reputational violence and blood feuds still occur in wealthy and prosperous areas; however, these areas often have well-functioning justice systems, which are key to addressing the problem. MacDonald responded that culture and economics cannot be separated into single causal variables; the social context where people spend time matters.
From page 70...
... MacDonald explained that simply building community centers has not proven to be an effective approach because the presence of such infrastructure will not address the highest risk people; such institutions would also have to attract and engage these individuals. Blattman added that because treatment follows diagnosis, to be successful, the physical infrastructure should connect to the root of the problem.


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