Blog Posts by Pardee RAND Faculty

  • Transportation soldiers and civilian harbormasters move cargo containers onto awaiting vessels in a training exercise at Joint Base Langley-Eustis

    Ten Years After the Safe Port Act, Are America's Ports Secure?

    The economic importance and visibility of America's ports make them attractive terrorism targets, writes Prof. Henry Willis. Port security has improved, but many of the threats that motivated the Safe Ports Act in 2006 remain, and new dangers have emerged, including cyber threats.

  • Emergency responders helping at a traffic accident

    A New Tool to Assess the Costs and Effectiveness of Traffic Crash Interventions

    Motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death in the United States. Prof. Jeanne Ringel writes that an online tool she developed with student Ben Batorsky (cohort '12) and RAND colleagues can help policymakers understand the available evidence-based interventions that can help prevent crash injuries and deaths, what they will cost, and how effective they will be in their state.

  • A self-driving vehicle travels on the road during a demonstration in Singapore, October 12, 2015

    The Police Could Be Controlling Your Self-Driving Car

    Apr 4, 2016

    Martin C. Libicki

    As self-driving cars become widespread, one of the biggest issues will be the rules under which public infrastructures and public safety officers may be empowered to override how autonomous vehicles are controlled, writes Prof. Martin Libicki.

  • Iraqi girls gesture peace signs after Iraqi security forces entered the town of Amerli, September 1, 2014

    Inciting Peace

    Malicious ideas, ideologies, and narratives (such as those promoted by ISIS) cannot just be eliminated — they need to be replaced, writes Prof. Christopher Paul.

  • A satellite orbiting Earth

    The Democratization of Space

    Mar 28, 2016

    William Welser IV

    A new economic model for outer space must account for lower barriers to entry and the involvement of more and more stakeholders, such as developing countries and start-ups, writes Prof. Bill Welser.

  • Pump jacks are seen at the Lukoil company owned Imilorskoye oil field, as the sun sets, outside the West Siberian city of Kogalym, Russia, January 25, 2016

    Crude Economics, Crude Politics: Who Wins and Who Loses with Cheap Oil?

    Feb 26, 2016

    Charles Wolf, Jr.

    Prof. Charles Wolf asks, What is the outlook for oil prices? And how can we assess the balance between positive effects on national security and negative effects on the national economy?

  • Cast members Amber Heard (left), Eddie Redmayne (center), and Alicia Vikander pose during the premiere of "The Danish Girl" in Los Angeles, California, November 21, 2015

    At the 2016 Oscars, Transgender Health Issues Are in the Spotlight

    Feb 26, 2016

    Sarah MacCarthy

    By inviting “The Danish Girl” to Hollywood's most prestigious awards party, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is helping to shine a spotlight on transgender issues — and reflecting a larger cultural moment at the same time, writes Prof. Sarah MacCarthy.

  • Cars stranded in flood waters from Hurricane Irene in lower Manhattan, August 28, 2011

    Why Engineers Need to Be Thinking About Climate Change

    Feb 22, 2016

    Kenneth Kuhn

    As sea levels rise and extreme weather events become more common, evacuation routes in coastal areas will become more important. Prof. Kenneth Kuhn says transportation engineers need to be more proactive as they try to anticipate damage to pavement, bridges, and culverts.

  • Group of friends holding their smart phones

    How You Can Be Cybersecurity's Strongest Asset

    Feb 18, 2016

    Sherry Ryan, Lillian Ablon

    Technology is thoroughly embedded within the average person's life but security is not emphasized to the general user, writes Prof. Lillian Ablon. Teaching the importance of security early on and continually bringing awareness to the public could help temper technology-based attacks.

  • A scientist displays Aedes aegypti mosquitoes inside the International IAEA's insect pest control laboratory in Seibersdorf, Austria, February 10, 2016

    Know Zika to Fight Zika

    Feb 12, 2016

    Melinda Moore

    Scientists across universities, governments, and industry are doubling down to gain a better understanding of the Zika virus and develop the diagnostic, preventive, and therapeutic tools needed to combat it. In the meantime, writes Prof. Melinda Moore, the public must be actively engaged.

  • The Chinese Luyang II-class guided missile destroyer Jinan and other ships in formation during a passing exercise, November 7, 2015

    China's Naval Modernization: Where Is It Headed?

    Feb 10, 2016

    Timothy R. Heath

    The PLA Navy is expanding its capabilities and operations to reduce vulnerabilities in China's near seas, but also to aggressively support its expanding global ambitions and challenge U.S. leadership in Asia, according to Prof. Timothy Heath.

  • The facade of the United States Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C.

    Fixing Judicial Recusals

    If judges or justices own stock in the company of a litigant, they must recuse themselves from hearing the case. While these recusals help ensure impartiality at the level of the individual judge, writes Prof. James Anderson, what effect do they have on the pool of judges that hear cases involving publicly held corporations?

  • The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's Legged Squad Support System can relieve troops of their 100-pound equipment load, take voice commands, and maneuver around obstacles, in addition to numerous other tasks in the field

    Should We Fear an AI Arms Race?

    Prof. William Welser notes that Stephen Hawking, Elon Musk, Steve Wozniak, and others have signed a letter calling for a ban on the application of artificial intelligence to advanced weapons systems. AI weapons are not without risks, Welser writes, but the benefits are substantial and the risks can be mitigated with more moderate regulation than a ban.

  • A North Korean long-range rocket is launched at the Sohae launch site in North Korea, February 7, 2016

    North Korea Rocket Launch: Why Did Kim Fire a Missile Now?

    Kim Jong-un is probably seeking clear successes before his important Seventh Party Congress in May, when he wants to appear to be the all-powerful leader of North Korea, writes Prof. (and alum) Bruce Bennett (cohort '75).

  • A doctor typing on a computer keyboard

    A Unique Identifier Could Protect Patient Privacy

    The policy debate about unique patient identifier numbers should determine the best approach for reconciling two goals: optimizing the privacy and security of health information and making record matching as close to perfect as is practical, writes Prof. Michael Greenberg.

  • A laborer lifts a basket of crushed bricks at a construction site in Dhaka, Bangladesh, May 22, 2014

    What to Do About Informal Employment in Developing Countries

    The staying power of informal employment in developing countries is a concern, because informal employees (e.g., day laborers) tend to receive lower wages, fewer benefits, and fewer legal protections. Prof. Shanthi Nataraj asks, How can policymakers improve conditions for informal workers?

  • Syrian refugee children who crossed into Jordanian territory with their families, January 14, 2016

    Battered by War, Syrian Refugee Kids Need to Be Taught

    More than 700,000 Syrian refugee children are not receiving formal education. Management of the Syrian refugee education crisis must take a longer view that recognizes the protracted nature of the problem, writes Prof. Louay Constant.

  • A man with his children in a doctor's waiting room

    Modifying the ACA's Family Subsidy Rules to Help Ensure Affordability

    Jan 12, 2016

    Amado Cordova, Sarah A. Nowak, et al.

    The ACA encourages workers to retain employer coverage by restricting their eligibility for marketplace subsidies. Modifying the policy could help 700,000 people gain coverage and lower spending for 1.6 million who are insured but face high health care costs, writes Prof. Sarah Nowak.

  • Actor Charlie Sheen on the set of the NBC Today show in New York City, November 17, 2015

    Charlie Sheen and the Enduring Stigma Attached to HIV

    Dec 29, 2015

    Sarah MacCarthy

    HIV-related stigma and discrimination remains pervasive despite strides that have been made in fighting the disease, writes Prof. Sarah MacCarthy. Charlie Sheen reported paying more than $10 million in bribes to keep his HIV status secret before going public recently to put an end to the extortion.

  • Participants are seen in silhouette as they look at a screen showing a world map with climate anomalies during the World Climate Change Conference 2015 (COP21) at Le Bourget, near Paris, France, December 8, 2015

    Paris Gets the (Decision) Science Right

    Dec 18, 2015

    Steven W. Popper

    The framework for the Paris negotiations is in sync with what science tells us about how to make effective public policy decisions. This alone makes them historic and may provide a model for both local and global action on more than climate alone, writes Prof. Steven Popper.

  • Environmentalists hold a banner which reads in part, "For the Climate," near the Eiffel Tower during the World Climate Change Conference 2015

    COP21: Ambition and Momentum

    Negotiators in Paris last week achieved a historic breakthrough by adopting a fundamentally different, and likely more effective, institutional framework to address climate change, write alum Jordan Fischbach (cohort '04) and Prof. Rob Lempert. The framework builds on two concepts missing from past attempts to forge a global treaty: voluntary participation and adaptive policymaking.

  • Paramedics pushing a patient on a gurney into a hospital

    Saving Lives After Tragedy

    Natural and man-made mass-casualty incidents are a growing threat, writes Prof. Chris Nelson. Evaluating successes and shortcomings after each crisis can contribute to the design and implementation of robust and resilient response systems and ensure the best possible outcomes for individuals and impacted communities.

  • U.S. Marines receive a safety brief before they conduct live-fire drills during Trident Juncture 2015 in Almeria, Spain, October 27, 2015

    Building Interoperability for European Defense

    To make the most out of declining defense budgets, the U.S. needs to engage European forces to build interoperability that would enable joint operations to deter and defeat potential adversaries, even with little advance notice. But building interoperable units has often proved difficult even among the friendliest of nations, write student Jakub Hlavka (cohort '14) and Prof. Chris Pernin.

  • Over 5,000 weapons confiscated from criminals in Los Angeles County and collected through a gun buyback program were  melted and reformed as steel in Rancho Cucamonga, California, July 2013

    Gun Violence: Where Is the Research That Might Save Lives?

    Nov 5, 2015

    Jeffrey Wasserman

    Gun violence is an important public health problem that accounts for more than 33,000 deaths each year in the United States but in 1996, Congress stripped the CDC of funding for any research that could be associated with gun control advocacy. The lack of CDC funding has deterred researchers, writes Prof. (and alum) Jeffrey Wasserman (cohort '85).

  • Student taking a standardized test

    Standardized Tests Can Be Smarter

    Capping the amount of time students spend testing is a reasonable response to unchecked growth. However, a better response would be to systematically review testing programs, focusing on tests that offer the most value, write Profs. Laura Hamilton and Brian Stecher.