I was thinking about a theoretical economy where there are 3 types of roles for the agents. They can be :

workers : produce good A criminals : steal good A cops : protects good A

without going into details, are they any theories around this type of economy and the different types of equilibrium that can be achieved, using different characteristics for agents, different rules etc...

This idea came from the fact that raising productivity could have perverse effects (raise criminality in this case) given certain conditions.

Also, do you have any tips on researching among existing economic theories for something that will describe an idea that you might have,

  • $\begingroup$ I have definitely seen a paper on crime with workers, criminals, and police. But I can't recall who wrote it and where I saw it. I'd suggest starting with Chapter 9 of this book. $\endgroup$
    – Herr K.
    Oct 29, 2015 at 6:52
  • $\begingroup$ Note that technically speaking, you don't have 3 types of agents, but rather you have 3 agents. Usually a "type" in economics is reserved for the same kind of agent but with some small difference. I.e. two workers with different productivity are two types of agents, but a producer and a consumer are two agents. $\endgroup$
    – BB King
    Oct 29, 2015 at 10:58
  • $\begingroup$ and how do you convey the fact that agents can be going from workers to being criminals? do they become a different agent? $\endgroup$
    – Revoltic
    Oct 31, 2015 at 0:11

1 Answer 1


Becker has a very widely cited paper about crime that generally defines the literature, here.

To examine your proposal, increases in productivity generally lead to higher wages in the legal sector, but could easily increase crime rates if they disproportionately increased the returns to crime.

No agent modeling or network theory is needed for this to an accepted idea in the literature, but you're welcome to explore it if you think the consequences are somehow divergent from what I've outlined here! Furthermore, the actual task to -verify- his theory is very difficult. To search "the literature", I would search within the body of papers citing this particular Becker paper.

  • $\begingroup$ the idea is tha tthis isnt just a crime phenomenom, but can be tied to other markets as well, like healthcare, bad, food ,workers or war, construction workers, workers or misinformation, information, workers (listeners) In each case there would probably be different ramifications associated with how our agents behave $\endgroup$
    – Revoltic
    Oct 31, 2015 at 0:08

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