Thus, a neighbourhood characterized by social disorganization provides fertile soil for crime and delinquency in two ways: through a lack of behavioural control mechanisms and through the cultural transmission of delinquent values. The social disorganization perspective remained both popular and influential throughout the 1950s and 1960s.
In particular, recent research has explicitly tested for “intervening mechanisms” or mediating variables between the traditional social disorganization variables and crime rates.
Instead, crime tended to be concentrated in particular areas of the city, and importantly, remained relatively stable within different areas despite continual changes in the populations who lived in each area.
In neighbourhoods with high crime rates, for example, the rates remained relatively high regardless of which racial or ethnic group happened to reside there at any particular time, and, as these previously “crime-prone groups” moved to lower-crime areas of the city, their rate of criminal activity decreased accordingly to correspond with the lower rates characteristic of that area.
These have been referred to as the systemic model of social disorganization (Bursik and Grasmick, 1993; 1996) and the social capital/collective efficacy framework developed by Robert Sampson and his colleagues (Sampson, Morenoff and Earls, 1999; Sampson, Raudenbush and Earls, 1997).
The systemic variant of social disorganization focuses on the structural variation of three basic types of networks and the effects of these on crime. Neighbourhood family structure and the risk of personal victimization.