Professor Robert Witt
Professor of Economics
Qualifications: BA (CNAA), MSc, MA, PhD (Essex)
Phone: Work: 01483 68 6954
Room no: 23 AD 00
On sabbatical leave 2013-2014
RePEc web page: download papers
Robert Witt is Professor of Economics and was Head of the School/Dept of Economics (2008-2013). He graduated from Kingston Polytechnic with a B.A. (Hons) (CNAA) in Economics in 1974 and received an M.Sc. in Financial Economics from the University of Wales (Bangor) in 1975. He also spent time as a Masters student at Essex University. He completed his Ph.D. in Economics at Essex in 1991. Before coming to Surrey he worked as an economic analyst in the City, taught at the City of London Polytechnic and then moved to the University of St. Andrews. He has been a visiting professor at Florida International University in the United States.
Empirical work in labour economics, the economics of crime and the economics of sport.
He has served as a consultant to the US Department of Health and Human Services, the Home Office and the Department for Business Innovation and Skills.
- 'Red Cards, Referee Home Bias and Social Pressure: Evidence From English Premiership Soccer'. Taylor and Francis Applied Economics Letters, 20 (7), pp. 710-714. . (2013)
- 'Robbing banks: Crime does pay - but not very much'. Significance, 9 (3), pp. 17-21. . (2012)
- 'Panic on the Streets of London: Police, Crime, and the July 2005 Terror Attacks'. American Economic Association American Economic Review, 101 (5), pp. 2157-2181.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/430858/
In this paper we study the causal impact of police on crime, looking at what happened to crime and police before and after the terror attacks that hit central London in July 2005. The attacks resulted in a large redeployment of police officers to central London as compared to outer London. During this time, crime fell significantly in central relative to outer London. The instrumental variable approach we use uncovers an elasticity of crime with respect to police of approximately −0.3 to −0.4, so that a 10 percent increase in police activity reduces crime by around 3 to 4 percent.
- 'Disciplinary Sanctions in English Premiership Football: Is There a Racial Dimension?'. Elsevier Labour Economics, 18 (3), pp. 360-370.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/418181/
This paper assesses the evidence for a racial difference in both the dispensation of formal disciplinary sanctions and in the number of fouls called by referees in professional football. The study uses a unique dataset comprising player match-level information drawn from five recent seasons of the English Premiership. These data were merged with data from other sources to identify, among other things, the racial affiliation of the player across four separate categories (viz., white, black, mixed race, and Asian). No systematic evidence of an unfair treatment of players from the non-white minority groups in respect of either the receipt of disciplinary cards or in the number of penalised fouls called by referees was detected.
- 'Domestic burglaries and the real price of audio-visual goods: Some time series evidence for Britain'. ELSEVIER SCIENCE SA ECONOMICS LETTERS, 100 (1), pp. 96-100.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/430857/
- 'The hazard of being an English football league manager: empirical estimates for three recent league seasons'. PALGRAVE MACMILLAN LTD JOURNAL OF THE OPERATIONAL RESEARCH SOCIETY, 59 (7), pp. 884-891.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/430859/
- 'Favouritism and financial incentives: A natural experiment'. BLACKWELL PUBLISHING ECONOMICA, 75 (298), pp. 296-309.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/430852/
Principals who exercise favouritism towards certain agents may harm those who are not so favoured. We address this issue in the context of a natural experiment from English soccer. We study the effects of professional referees on a common measure of referee bias: length of injury time in close matches. We find that referees exercised a degree of favouritism prior to professionalism but not afterwards, having controlled for selection and soccer-wide effects. We also discuss the suitability of the variable that we, and others, use to measure favouritism, noting that alternative interpretations may be possible.
- 'The determinants of employee crime in the UK'. BLACKWELL PUBLISHING ECONOMICA, 74 (293), pp. 161-175. . (2007)
- 'The transition from welfare to work'. Eastern Economic Journal, 33 (3), pp. 359-373. . (2007)
- 'Deterrence and Incapacitation'. Ius et Lex, (V) . (2006)
- 'Do Players React to Sanction Changes? Evidence form the English Premier League'. John Wiley and Sons Scottish Journal of Political Economy, 52 (4), pp. 623-640. . (2005)
- 'Forecasting Quarterly Aggregate Crime Series'. John Wiley and Sons The Manchester School, 76 (6), pp. 709-727. . (2005)
- 'What We Spend and What We get: Public and Private Provision of Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice'. John Wiley and Sons Fiscal Studies, 22 (1), pp. 1-40. . (2001)
- 'Crime, Prison and Female Labour Supply'. Springer Journal of Quantitative Criminology, 16 (1), pp. 69-85. . (2000)
- 'Crime Displacement and Police Interventions: Evidence from London’s “Operation Theseus”'. in Tella RD, Edwards S, Schargrodsky E (eds.) The Economics of Crime: Lessons for and from Latin America
University Of Chicago Press Article number 10 , pp. 359-374.Full text is available at: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/430861/
This book contributes to the current debate on causes and solutions by applying lessons learned from recent developments in the economics of crime.
- 'What We Spend and What We Get: Public and Private Provision of Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice'. in Miles D, Myles G, Preston I (eds.) The Economics of Public Spending OUP Oxford , pp. 199-235. . (2003)
- 'Crime Causation: Economic Theories'. in Dressler J (ed.) Encyclopedia of Crime and Justice MacMillan Reference Library 1, pp. 302-306. . (2002)
- 'Crime, Unemployment and Deprivation'. in Fielding N, Clarke A, Witt R (eds.) The Economics Dimensions of Crime London and New York : Macmillan Press and St. Martin's Press , pp. 210-222. . (2000)
- The Policy Context and Infant and Toddler Care in the Welfare Reform Era. . (2002)
- Child Care and the Welfare to Work Transition. . (2000)
- Changes in the Availability, Quality and Price of Child Care in Massachusetts Between 1997 to 1999. . (2000)
Google Scholar: http://scholar.google.co.uk/citations?user=8Wjz88YAAAAJ&hl=en