Crime and the “poverty penalty” in urban Ghana
Ghana’s rapid urbanization has contributed to a reduction in poverty across the country, yet crime and violence have been on the rise. IDRC-supported researchers at the University of Ghana investigated why lower levels of poverty were not helping to reduce crime and prevent violence. The result: Western theories of how crime and poverty are linked do not adequately explain these dynamics in Ghana.
In this brief, the research team shares the results of their three-year project, “Exploring the crime and poverty nexus in urban Ghana.” Part of the Safe and Inclusive Cities initiative, the project identified that poor people pay a penalty for their poverty: they are both more likely to be a victim of crime, but lack the resources to prevent it or seek justice. Additionally, straightforward conclusions about how crime and poverty are linked are difficult to draw because they can create vicious cycles.
To learn more about how crime, violence, and poverty interact in four of Ghana’s cities, read the Research Results brief: “Crime and the poverty penalty in urban Ghana” (PDF, 6.4MB).
Discover more about the project, “Exploring the crime and poverty nexus in urban Ghana” and its findings.
Find out how IDRC is working to create Safe and Inclusive Cities through our partnership with the UK’s Department for International Development.