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United States Peace Index 2012

July 10, 2012 Comments off

United States Peace Index 2012 (PDF)
Source: Institute for Economics and Peace

The United States Peace Index (USPI), produced by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP), provides a comprehensive measure of U.S. peacefulness dating back to 1991. It also provides an analysis of the socio-economic measures that are associated with peace as well as estimates of the costs of violence and the economic benefits that would flow from increases in peace. This is the second edition of the U.S. Peace Index.

This year a Metropolitan Peace Index has also been produced which measures the peacefulness of 61 metropolitan statistical areas within the U.S. The USPI is based on the work of the Global Peace Index, the preeminent global measure of peacefulness, which has been produced by IEP every year since 2007.

The last twenty years have seen a substantial and sustained reduction in direct violence in the U.S. The homicide rate has halved since 1991, with a concurrent reduction in the violent crime rate from 748 to 399 violent crimes per 100,000 over this period. Although this trend seemed to be levelling off at the turn of the century, the last three years have seen successive improvements in peace.

The 2012 USPI results have also been correlated against a large secondary dataset of economic, educational, health, demographic, and social capital factors, in order to determine the environments which are most closely associated with peace in the U.S.

Although there was a strong relationship between the drop in crime and the increase in the incarceration rate in the 90s, this relationship is no longer evident with 27 states decreasing their incarceration rates while simultaneously experiencing reductions in their violent crime rates. Between 2000 and 2010, New York experienced a fall in violent crime and incarceration every year, as well as falls in its homicide rate.

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