U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Understanding and Monitoring the "Whys" Behind Juvenile Crime Trends

Award Information

Award #
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2004, $600,000)

The Whys Project, a 5-year research project, has two complementary aims: 1) to explain the downturn in most measures of violent juvenile crime that began in about 1993 following a large increase between about 1986 and about 1992; and 2) to develop a projection model that local practitioners can use to predict turning points in their juvenile crime trends, based on locally available data.

During this current funding period, the project team will work with three local jurisdictions to implement a technology for small-area monitoring of leading indicators of juvenile offending and using those trends to forecast changes in juvenile crime trends. The technology is CrimeBase, a web-based tool for aggregating geocodable incident data to Census blocks, linking it to Census records and other data, then facilitating manipulation of the block-level data into areas such as police sectors, neighborhood planning districts, or any user-defined geography. While a general methodology for developing local forecasting tools will be used, the application of CrimeBase for each partner will require tailoring the forecasting tool in light of variations in data availability. The team will test the usability and predictive accuracy of the forecasting tool. Success benchmarks will be: installation of the CrimeBase and prediction tools; compilation of the database designed jointly by staff of our team and the local host organization; predictive accuracy of the forecasting tool; and the local staff's satisfaction with the tools and skill in using them. The final phaes of the project will consist of data collection, analysis, model refinement and dissemination of findings. CA/NCF

Date Created: August 18, 2004