General Multilevel Opportunity and Crime

Hyungjin Lim, Yongtae Chun


Since the 1960s, criminologists have tried to find the cause of crime in the opportunities for crime instead of in the characteristics of individuals. As a result, many opportunity theories emerged. Also, the opportunity theories were conceptualized and tested by much research. Most of the research focused on opportunity theories at single levels of analysis. However, recently there has been a trend in the field among some to move toward “multilevel” explanations. The remarkable thing among the trend is general multilevel opportunity theory. Noting that both the context surrounding an individual and the characteristics of the individual affect crime symbiotically, they tried to integrate opportunity theories and social disorganization theory to explain the phenomenon. This paper reviewed multilevel approach in conceptualizing and testing opportunity theory and the crime prevention implications according to multilevel criminal opportunity were suggested.

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