I am a professor of Economics at SOFI, Stockholm University. My research interests include labor economics, intergenerational mobility, entrepreneurship, social networks, and crime.
Works in Progress
ADHD, Prison Healthcare, and Crime (with Randi Hjalmarsson)
Peer Effects in the Workplace: A Network Approach (with Jan Sauermann and Yves Zenou)
Are Entrepreneurs More Upwardly Mobile? (with Theodor Vladasel)
A selection from Stockholm University publication database
The Health Effects of Prison
2022. Randi Hjalmarsson, Matthew J. Lindquist. American Economic Journal 14 (4), 234-270Article
This paper studies the health effects of Swedish prison reforms that held sentences constant but increased the share of time inmates had to serve. The increased time served did not harm post-release health and actually reduced mortality risk. We find especially large decreases in mortality for offenders not previously incarcerated, younger offenders, and those more attached to the labor market. Risk of suicide and circulatory death fell for inmates with mental health problems and older inmates, respectively. In-prison health care utilization and program participation increased with time served, suggesting health care treatment and services as the key mechanism for mortality declines.
Kan bättre hälsa minska brottslighet?
2022. Randi Hjalmarsson, Matthew J. Lindquist, Axel Malmcrona. Ekonomisk Debatt 50 (4), 30-43Article
Samhället kan välja att bekämpa brott på många olika sätt. Vi beskriver hurinsatser som förbättrar hälsan hos befolkningen kan vara ett sätt att bekämpabrottslighet. En växande litteratur inom nationalekonomi som studerar kausalasamband visar att hälso- och sjukvård kan ha en rehabiliterande effekt för demed hög risk att begå brott. Vi presenterar även en ny svensk studie som visar attintagna som spenderade längre tid i fängelse, och därmed tog del av mer hälso-och sjukvård, hade bättre förutsättningar för en långsiktig fysisk och mentalhälsa utan att öka risken för återfall i brottslighe
On the origins of entrepreneurship: Evidence from sibling correlations
2021. Theodor Vladasel (et al.). Journal of Business Venturing 36 (5)Article
Despite the consensus that entrepreneurship runs in the family, we lack evidence regarding the total importance of family and community background, as well as the relative importance of different background influences that affect entrepreneurship. We draw on human capital formation theories to argue that families and communities provide a salient context for the development of individual entrepreneurial skills and preferences, beyond the existing focus on parental entrepreneurship. We posit that early influences are more important than later influences and propose a hierarchy of family influences, whereby genes have the largest explanatory power, followed by parental entrepreneurship, neighborhoods, and parental resources, and finally by parental immigration, family structure, and sibling peers. Finally, we argue that the higher human and financial capital intensity of incorporated relative to unincorporated entrepreneurship predictably alters the hierarchy of family influences, as does gender. Sibling correlations estimated on Swedish register data confirm our hypotheses.
Crime and networks: ten policy lessons
2019. Matthew J. Lindquist, Yves Zenou. Oxford review of economic policy 35 (4), 746-771Article
Social network analysis can help us understand the root causes of delinquent behaviour and crime and provide practical guidance for the design of crime prevention policies. To illustrate these points, we first present a selective review of several key network studies and findings from the criminology and police studies literature. We then turn to a presentation of recent contributions made by network economists. We highlight ten policy lessons and provide a discussion of recent developments in the use of big data and computer technology.
The Causal Effects of Military Conscription on Crime
2019. Randi Hjalmarsson, Matthew J. Lindquist. Economic Journal 129 (622), 2522-2562Article
We study the causal effect of mandatory military conscription in Sweden on the criminal behaviour of men born in the 1970s. We find that military service significantly increases post-service crime (overall and across multiple crime categories) between the ages of 23 and 30. These results are driven primarily by young men who come from low socioeconomic status households and those with pre-service criminal histories, despite evidence of a contemporaneous incapacitation effect of service for the latter group. Much of this crime-inducing effect can be attributed to negative peer effects experienced during service. Worse post-service labour market outcomes may also matter.