Broken Windows Theory

The Broken Windows Theory is a criminological theory that suggests that visible signs of crime, anti-social behavior, and civil disorder, such as broken windows and graffiti, can create an atmosphere of disorder and lead to more serious crime.

According to the theory, if a neighborhood or community allows small crimes and disorder to go unchecked, it sends a message that no one is in charge and that the area is not well-maintained. This can create a sense of lawlessness that encourages more serious crime.

The Broken Windows Theory was first introduced in a 1982 article by social scientists James Q. Wilson and George Kelling. It has since been widely adopted by law enforcement agencies and has been credited with helping to reduce crime in many cities around the world.

The theory has been controversial, however, as some critics argue that it may lead to over-policing and the targeting of certain neighborhoods and communities, particularly those that are disadvantaged or marginalized.


[ Glossary ]


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