Contact person:
Alexander Engström
  • Fakultetsmedel
Responsible at MaU:
Alexander Engström
Project members at MaU:
Time frame:
01 January 2024 - 31 December 2026
Research subject:

About the project

What makes some individuals experience fear and worry about crime but not others? This is a central question in criminological and victimological research that has received much attention for a relatively long time. The most common explanations are that people who have previously been victimized of crime are more fearful or worried than those who have not, but also that people with a certain vulnerability (e.g. physical or social) are more fearful or worried than others. A recurring result in research is also that women generally report higher levels of fear and worry of crime than men, which also is true for older compared to younger individuals. Although previous victimization of crime, individual vulnerability and demographic factors can be partial explanations for why some people experience fear and worry about crime, a small but growing amount of research has recently emerged that can be linked to personality traits and psychological explanatory factors. This research shows that an immersed individual focus is of important value in fear of crime research.


This research project aims to contribute to the relatively limited body of research on personality traits and psychological factors in explaining fear and worry about crime at the individual level. The research project therefore aims to examine to what extent there is a type of individual "propensity" to experience fear and worry about crime. These propensity components may, for example, be linked to general anxiety or neuroticism. To fulfil the aim of the research project, a web-based survey will be conducted among a selection of individuals from two populations. Partly a student population, partly a general population. The survey broadly contains three question areas linked to background/demographic factors (gender, age, etc.), individual propensity factors (anxiety, psychological vulnerability, etc.) and fear and worry (both linked to the victimization of crime but also worry linked to finances, illness, etc.). The research project aims to lead to increased knowledge about who experiences fear and worry, and why, which can also lead to better and more targeted efforts to increase perceptions of safety in society.