Rational Choice Theory
Rational choice theory is used to model economic and social behavior. The theory holds that the aggregate of social behavior results from the actions of individual people, each individual in the society is responsible for their decisions. The rational choice theory focuses on the determinant factors of the individual decisions. According to the rational choice theory, individuals seek to minimize their disadvantage and maximize their advantages. There are three basic premises associated with the rational choice theory. One is that human beings always base their behavior on rational examination of the circumstances. The second premise is that humans always act with utmost rationality when making choices and the third premise is that the choices that people make maximize pleasure or profit. Rational choice theory has found ready application in several fields such as economics, sociology, and criminology. Despite this, there are several defects in the theory. For instance, rational choice theory does not explain altruism (Cornish & Clarke, 2014).
I think most crime is the result of rational choice, rational choice theory suggests that the actions of humans are based on rational calculations. As such, criminals always rationally analyze the risks associated with crime and choose to undertake in them to maximize their profit and pleasure. The activities that humans undertake in are aimed at benefiting themselves; this can be used to explain criminal acts such as theft and corruption (Cornish & Clarke, 2014).
Routine activities theory is an attempt at explaining crime. The theory states that crime is not dependent on social factors such as unemployment or poverty; instead. Crime occurs because of three factors, the lack of an able guardian, the presence of a suitable target and the motivation of the offender. The routine activities theory explains why crime continues to grow even though societies achieve more economic prosperity. According to the routine activities theory, people are victimized simply because of the will of the offender and the susceptibility of the victim (Mustaine & Tewksbury, 1999).
Cornish, & Clarke. (2014). The Reasoning Criminal: Rational choice perspectives on offending. Transaction Publishers.
Mustaine, & Tewksbury. (1999). Routine activity theory explanation for women victimizations. . Violence Against Women, 5(1), 43-62.