One of the puzzles in human existence is crime. Crime is a complex and multifaceted phenomenon.  We know that crime is related to many different factors, and that criminal behavior is difficult to predict.  However, when we measure the criminality of a group of people, there seems to be a high degree of rank order stability.  This presents a paradox, how can criminal behavior be stable and hard to predict at the same time?

There are a number of other conundrums and paradoxes that have been discovered about crime and criminal behavior and these puzzling findings represent a “criminological puzzle.”  This site is provides an exploration of the criminological puzzle. The issues vary from the simple to the complex.

My basic thesis is that there is a way to explain most, if not all, of the criminological conundrums and paradoxes.  However, the solution to the criminological puzzle requires a different approach to the problem.  Criminologists may have to let go of some of the more persistent assumptions that have been made and start making new assumptions.  There is a need to take a very close look at “how the world works.”  Once we do that, the solution to the criminological puzzle will not be far behind.

My goal is to present a way forward to a different way of thinking about the world, and by extension, crime and criminal behavior.  The site is set up so that you can jump around and look at either the pieces of the puzzle or some of the suggested solutions.  There should be a little something for anyone interested in this topic.

If you decide that you want to take the next step and do some research of your own based upon these ideas, I will be posting some of the underlying papers and ideas on the Social Science Research Network (SSRN).  This will give you a source that you can cite that will be available for others to read.

I am looking for input. Some of these ideas were first proposed in the early 1800s and did not become widely accepted. These do not seem to be easy concepts to grasp. If you have any questions or comments, please send an email.

Thanks in advance for any input you can provide.

Tom Arnold