This paper outlines the kinds of research-based evidence that are relevant to informing the debate over policies to reduce gun violence. We then turn to a review of the evidence, beginning with a brief summary of data on gun violence in America, and then of the array of gun policies currently in effect. Next we consider the evidence pertinent to a basic question: whether more guns lead to more, or less, crime and violence. We discuss the evidence for policies that seek to keep guns away from high-risk people, rather than change the overall prevalence of gun ownership, and then consider the available evidence for demand-side regulations and enforcement targeted at criminal gun use and illegal gun carrying. We conclude with a discussion of the implications of the available evidence for future research and policy.
Philip J. Cook and Jens Ludwig (2006)
Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, vol 25, n3, pages 691–735, 2006