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Risks of Violence in Major Daily Activities: United States, 2003-2005

NCJ Number
Date Published
November 2010
549 pages
The purpose of this dissertation was to quantify the risk of violence in different activities and types of places. Risk of violence poses a distinct challenge because the routine activity patterns of individuals vary.

The results of this analysis indicate the risk of violence Americans face at home is substantially lower than anywhere else. The data also indicates that while at home an individual's risk of violence is dependent upon what they are doing, with sleeping the safest activity. However, the risk of violence during other activities at home is 12 times higher than it is for sleeping. This suggests that being awake puts Americans at an increased risk of violence even when they are in a relatively safe environment. These findings support the theoretical framework of this federally supported dissertation which argues the risk of violence should be lower at home than anywhere else. While away from home, the findings indicate the risk of violence varies greatly between activities and types of place. This also supports the theoretical framework which argues the risk of violence will not be uniform while away from home because different activities and types of place create different opportunity structures for crime. These findings indicate crime prevention strategies cannot neglect the role lifestyles play in an individual's risk of victimization. This research indicates it is what people do, not who they are, that determine their risk of violence. To conclude, this study provides a methodological framework that could be applied to future risk assessments performed at the macro- or micro-level. The routine activity approach, lifestyle perspective, and environmental criminology all argue the risk of violence is not distributed evenly across time and space. The dissertation quantifies the risk of violence for different activities and types of place. It used data from the National Crime Victimization Survey and American Time Use Survey to calculate activity- and place-specific rates of violence. Tables, figures, references, and appendixes A-C

Date Published: November 1, 2010