Research Proposal On Death Penalty

Published: 2021-06-21 23:51:11
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Category: Education, Study, Social Issues, Crime

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The topic that was chosen for this research study is the death penalty. The occurrence of heinous crimes and rise in the criminality rate supports the restoration of death penalty. Many of the death penalty advocates believe that is a legitimate sanction against murderers for retributive purposes. The more compelling reason to restore the death penalty is the positive claims on its deterrent effect to future crimes. Thus, the punishment can be regarded as a lawful discipline to discourage hardened criminals from their wrongdoings.
This topic was chosen because there are several countries around the globe which questioned the legitimacy of the death penalty on the basis of social, religious and political beliefs. In countries like Europe and the U.S., the death penalty has been disallowed due to claims of violation of human rights a flagrant violation of the one’s right to life and dignity (Bedau & Cassell, 2005).
Thesis Statement: The death penalty should be restored based on its deterrent effects by instilling fear among criminals on the legal consequences of crimes.
Background of the Study
There had been deterrence researches showing that the imposition of the death penalty lowers the homicide rates. In 1970, Isaac Ehrlich first discovered deterrent effects of the death penalty when he studied its effects after the execution of convicted criminals for the years 1933 and 1969. Ehrlich’s study showed that the death penalty was able to prevent eight homicides (Radelet & Akers, 1996). However, there was a need to conduct succeeding empirical research studies by criminologists headed by Thorsten Sellin. Sellin formulated the hypothesis that there is a strong and solid probability that the death penalty carries long-term deterrent effects on homicide rates in comparison to life imprisonment (Radelet & Arkers, 1996). There were other criminologists who affirmed these findings in the person of Lawrence R, Klein, who affirmed the results of the study by Isaac Ehrlich on the deterrent effect of the death penalty on future crimes in 1970 (Radelet & Arkers, 1996).
At present, the death penalty is presumed to have deterrent effects the remains to be a debatable issue that is highly criticized. Therefore, there is a need to perform a new study on the whether the death penalty can deter crimes by showing concrete evidence to change the position of the policy makers for the restoration of the punishment.
Goals and Objectives
The main objective of this research study is to conduct an investigation of the potential preventive effect of death penalty on crimes that may be committed in the future. The research study will be able to accomplish this objective by:
- Examining and probing the criminality rate in the U.S. for the last five (5) years and comparing it for the past five years
- Investigating the different factors that influence criminals to commit crimes
- Establishing the imposition of death penalty to prevent criminals to commit crimes or offenses in the future
Research Questions
- What are the factors that may influence the criminals to commit crimes?
- What are the possible effects of the death penalty on criminals?
- What role does the government play in ensuring the criminality rate will not increase?
- What is the potential effect of capital punishment or death penalty on homicide rates?
Learning Objectives for the Study
Towards the completion of the research, the researcher is expected to:
- Identify the factors that influence criminals to commit crimes.
- Understand impact of the death penalty on criminals.
3. Analyze data from various sources that will sufficiently answer the research questions and explore other alternative explanations.
The researcher will use of different data taken from scholarly journals, books, websites and newspapers on the potential preventive or restrictive effect of the death penalty based on the state-level panel data was gathered the fifty states in America and Columbia for the past ten years from 1995 to 2006. The dependent variable to be used shall be the number of homicide that occurred in 100,000 persons in each state. Other data and information shall be based on findings taken from reported deterrence investigations that were published in order to analyze the deterrent effects of the death penalty (Bailey, 1978).
The main concern of the researcher is that there may not be enough sources to make generalizations that may affect the conclusions of the research.
Resources Needed
The resources needed for this research study will include:
- Electronic libraries that stores a collection of past research and academic journals that are relevant to the study.
- Computer and Internet: The researcher will be using laptop and needs a good internet service to conduct the study.
Literature Review
The thesis statement claims that the death penalty carries a long-term deterrent effect against criminals and prevents them to commit future crimes. However, the deterrent effect of the death penalty continues to be controversial and a debatable issue. Hence, this research study will show that the death penalty has deterrent effect and is more effective to prevent future crimes as opposed to life imprisonment. The researcher will use various sources to prove or disprove the thesis statement.
Bailey, W. C. (1978). Some further evidence on imprisonment vs. the death penalty as a deterrent to murder. Law and Human Behavior, 2(3), 245-260.
Bedau, H.and Cassell P.G. (2005). Debating the Death Penalty: Should America Have Capital Punishment? New York, USA: Oxford University Press.
Chalfin, A., Haviland, A., & Raphael, S. (2013). What Do Panel Studies Tell Us About a Deterrent Effect of Capital Punishment? A Critique of the Literature. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, 29(1), 5-43.
Choe, J. (2010). Another Look at the Deterrent Effect of Death Penalty. Journal of Advanced Research in Law & Economics, 1(1), 12-15.
Ehrlich, I. (1975). The Deterrent Effect of Capital Punishment: A Question of Life and Death. American Economic Review, 65(3), 397.
Fagan, J., Zimring, F. E., & Geller, A. (2006). Capital Punishment and Capital Murder: Market Share and the Deterrent Effects of the Death Penalty. Texas Law Review, 84(7), 1803-1847.
Johnson, D. T & Zimring, F. E. (2009). The Next Frontier: National Development, Political Change, and the Death Penalty in Asia. London: Oxford University Press.
Radelet, M. L., & Akers, R. L. (1996). Deterrence and the Death Penalty: The Views of the Experts. Journal of Criminal Law & Criminology, 87(1), 1.

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