Walter L. Perry

Photo of Walter Perry
Adjunct Information Scientist; Professor, Pardee RAND Graduate School
Washington Office


Ph.D. in information technology, George Mason University; M.S. in operations research, Tulane University; M.B.A. in management science, Tulane University; B.A. in mathematics and economics, Northeastern University

Media Resources

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Walter Perry is an adjunct information scientist at the RAND Corporation and a professor at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. Perry recently led a study of defense institution building and concluded a survey of predictive policing methods. He also led a study examining the behavior detection science base and developed heterogeneous behavior detection data fusion methods aimed at reducing predictive uncertainty. Prior to that, Perry led two projects on Operation Iraqi Freedom. The first was RAND's multiyear involvement in the Operational Analysis and Support Team for the Joint IED Defeat Organization, and the second was a congressionally mandated analysis of alternative drawdown plans for the exit of U.S. troops from Iraq. He led an Army-sponsored study that has resulted in a fully documented account of the Kosovo conflict, operations in Afghanistan, and major combat operations in Iraq. He developed an algorithm for the Defense intelligence Agency designed to indicate when a terrorist group is on the verge of acquiring weapons of mass destruction. He conducted research into methods for developing data fusion and information-processing algorithms and analyzing large command-and-control problems through network modeling. He developed several metrics of the impact of command and control on military operations for both Army and Navy applications. Perry joined RAND in 1984 after a 20-year career with the U.S. Army Signal Corps. He has taught electrical engineering and computer sciences at The George Washington University, statistics at George Mason University, and mathematics at West Point. Perry received his Ph.D. from George Mason University.

Previous Positions

Telecommunications Policy Analyst, Manager, National Communications System

Recent Projects

  • Minimizing the threat from improvised explosive devices
  • Analytic support to intelligence in counterinsurgencies
  • Withdrawal from Iraq: alternative schedules
  • Predictive policing methods
  • Behavior detection

Selected Publications

Walter Perry et al., Predicting Suicide Attacks: Integrating Spatial, Temporal, and Social Features of Terrorist Attack Targets, RAND (MG-1246), 2013

Walter L. Perry, Brian McInnis, Carter C. Price, Susan C. Smith, John S. Hollywood, Predictive Policing: The Role of Crime Forecasting in Law Enforcement Operations, RAND Corporation (RR-233-NIJ), 2013

Paul K. Davis, Walter L. Perry, Ryan Andrew Brown, Douglas Yeung, Parisa Roshan, Phoenix Voorhies, Using Behavioral Indicators to Help Detect Potential Violent Acts: A Review of the Science Base, RAND Corporation (RR-215-Navy), 2013

Walter L. Perry, Stuart E. Johnson, Keith Crane, David C. Gompert, John Gordon IV, Robert Hunter, Dalia Dassa Kaye, Terrence K. Kelly, Eric Peltz, Howard J. Shatz, Withdrawal from Iraq: Alternative Schedules, Associated Risks, and Mitigating Strategies, RAND Corporation (MG-882-OSD), 2009

Walter Perry et al., Exploring Information Superiority: A Methodology for Measuring the Quality of Information and Its Impact on Shared Awareness, RAND Corporation (MR-1467), 2004

T. J. Sullivan and W. L. Perry, "Identifying Indicators of Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) Weapons Development Activity in Sub-national Terrorist Groups," Journal of the Operational Research Society, 55(4), 2004

Walter L. Perry and James Moffat, Information Sharing Among Military Headquarters: The Effects on Decisionmaking, RAND Corporation (MG-226), 2004

Walter L. Perry "Linking Systems Performance and Operational Effectiveness," in Larry B. Rainey and Andrew Loerch, eds, Methods for Conducting Military Operational Analysis: Best Practices in Use Throughout the Department of Defense (Methods), Military Operations Research Society, 2004


French; German

Recent Media Appearances

Interviews: Joint Force Quarterly; MIT Technology Review; NPR

Commentary: Government Technology


  • a police car pulling over a driver

    Predictive Policing: An Effective Tool, but Not a Crystal Ball

    Predictive policing is not an end-all solution, but rather a tool that must be used in concert with other policing resources as part of a broader anti-crime effort. Used properly, predictive policing can predict the risk of future events, but not the events themselves.

    Nov 14, 2013 Government Technology