Preventing Crime for Pennies on the Dollar

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President Obama meets with participants in the Becoming a Man project in 2013. (Official White House photo by Pete Souza)

President Obama meets with participants in the Becoming a Man project in 2013. (Official White House photo: Pete Souza)

Season 5, Episode 21

On this week’s episode of Freakonomics Radio: conventional crime-prevention programs tend to be expensive, onerous, and ineffective. Could something as simple (and cheap) as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) do the trick? First we go to Chicago, where at-risk teenagers who learn to be less impulsive have lower dropout and arrest rates.

Then, we take a look at Liberia, where a former child soldier and a team of researchers pair CBT with a cash incentive to help other former soldiers become productive citizens in peacetime.

To learn more, check out the podcasts from which this hour was drawn: “Preventing Crime for Pennies on the Dollar” and “‘I Don’t Know What You’ve Done With My Husband But He’s a Changed Man.'”

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