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January 3, 2007


Indicators - Society / Safety

S-1. Incidence Rate for General Crimes (per 100,000 people)

1.Current Values
2,187 incidents / 100,000 people (FY 2003)

2.Current Points
(out of a perfect score of 100 by 2050) 81 points
Calculation method:
(Current value - minimum value) / (2050 target value - minimum value) x 100

3. Explanation of Indicator
Although in the past Japan has been known throughout the world as a low-crime, safe society, at present crime incidents are rapidly increasing. General crimes (crimes excluding moving traffic violations) have risen almost 20% in the past 10 years; heinous crimes, compound crimes and crimes committed by youths have also increased.
With safety ensured, people can live without anxiety, and can begin to build relationships of mutual trust. Furthermore, that mutual trust forms the ground (social capital) from which knowledge and culture flower. We have chosen the incidence rate of crimes as an indicator of safety, which can be said to be the foundation of social capital.

4.Target for 2050
200 incidents / 100,000 people

5.Ideal for the Future
Approaching zero

6. Rationale for Ideal and Target Values
Crime ruins peace of mind and trust, which are parts of the social capital, and threatens a sustainable society. Realistically, we cannot eradicate crime, but we can aim for "approaching zero" as an ideal.

As to the target for 2050, we should look at how things are in other countries. In a United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) survey for the period 1998-2000, the country with the lowest crime rate in the world was Yemen, with 124 incidents per 100,000 population; of OECD countries, Turkey was the lowest with 420 incidents. International crime statistics cannot be compared wholesale, however, since they reflect the way in which crimes are recognized and reported. Nonetheless, for the sake of argument we have set 200 incidents per 100,000 population as our target for 2050, which approaches the safest level both among OECD countries and worldwide.

7. Source
Ministry of Justice, "White Paper on Crime 2004"(Japanese only)

Related information:
Total crimes per capita,

8. Notes
"General crimes" are crimes excluding moving traffic violations.


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