Transportation and Infrastructure Policy

Traffic on a waterfront road in New York City

Photo by LeoPatrizi/Getty Images

RAND addresses many of the pressing issues facing transportation planners, including how to plan for future mobility options, how to design communities to support multiple modes of transportation, and how to implement policies that advance transportation safety. Relatedly, this area of work in the IREP program of JIE explores the tradeoffs in developing infrastructure effectively and sustainably, and the challenges regarding which infrastructure investments to prioritize and how to pay for them.

  • Realizing Autonomous Vehicle Safety

    Feb 14, 2017

    Autonomous vehicles hold enormous promise for transportation safety. But feasible, sound methods of testing need to be developed. In the meantime, policymakers should work to foster the development of self-driving vehicles while lowering their risks.

  • Don't Rely on Test-Driving Alone to Assess Autonomous Vehicle Safety

    Jan 9, 2017

    Americans drive three trillion miles a year, causing one death every 100 million miles. To prove that autonomous vehicles are safer than humans, they would have to be test-driven astronomical distances. Regulators should pursue other ways of reducing uncertainty about AV safety.

  • Using Cost-Effectiveness Analysis to Prioritize Spending on Traffic Safety

    Dec 14, 2015

    In deciding how to allocate funds targeting traffic safety, policymakers must determine the appropriate trade-off between cost-effectiveness and equity among states. A new tool helps determine the most cost-effective interventions to reduce motor vehicle crash-related injuries and deaths.

  • Police Officers Face Risk of Traffic Injuries Under Many Conditions

    Sep 1, 2015

    Vehicle crashes are the largest cause of death among police in the United States. Knowing the risk factors can help law enforcement agencies take steps to lower the risk of injury collisions, such as restricting motorcycle use to situations where the use of other vehicles is not feasible.

  • Economic Growth Will Be the Main Driver of Mobility in China in 2030

    Jun 30, 2015

    Continued economic growth will be the main driver of future mobility and automobile use in China, but constraints on vehicle use and environmental regulations will be important issues as well.

  • How Can State Transportation Agencies Prepare for an Uncertain Energy Future?

    Mar 3, 2015

    In what ways will the mandate, role, funding, and operations of state departments of transportation be affected by changes in energy supply and demand in the next 30 to 50 years? Different supply-and-demand scenarios will require robust decision-making techniques.

  • Estimating Use Costs of Heavy Truck Traffic in Pennsylvania's Shale Natural Gas Boom

    Sep 1, 2014

    Development of natural gas resources has progressed rapidly in Pennsylvania. These activities require many heavy truck trips for equipment and materials, which can damage state and local roads not designed for high volumes of heavy truck traffic.

  • Exploring the Future of Driving in Developing Countries

    Jul 15, 2014

    The level of automobility, or travel in personal vehicles, varies among countries. By determining the factors besides economic development that have affected automobility in developed countries, researchers can predict how automobility might evolve in developing countries.