National Security: Featured Research

  • U.S. Military Service Members May Volunteer to Extend Tours if Offered Incentives

    Feb 8, 2016

    Nearly 60 percent of U.S. military service members surveyed were unwilling to voluntarily extend their tours, believing that doing so may adversely impact quality of life, morale, or job performance. Others reported interest in longer tours if financial incentives were offered.

  • The U.S. Needs to Exercise Leadership at the Biological Weapons Convention

    Dec 28, 2015

    The world is one rogue microbiologist away from a potentially devastating biological attack. In this new, evolving environment, the United States should establish its goals and objectives and build coalitions to help meet them.

  • Struggle in the Gray Zone and World Order

    Dec 22, 2015

    Recent experience suggests that the targets of gray zone campaigns recognize them for what they are — aggressive efforts to overturn the status quo. Gray zone aggression often prompts exactly the sort of reactions it's meant to avoid.

  • Assessment of Surface Ship Maintenance Requirements

    Dec 21, 2015

    Balancing fiscal constraints with a continued need for ready ships presents a challenge for the Department of Defense. Since the late 1990's, expenditures per ship have grown at an increasing rate, but steps can be taken to address surface ship maintenance and operations requirements in the context of these fiscal limitations.

  • National Defense Research Institute (NDRI)

    Oct 1, 2015

    The National Defense Research Institute (NDRI), a federally funded research and development center (FFRDC), conducts RAND research for the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD), the Joint Staff, the Unified Combatant Commands, the defense agencies, the United States Marine Corps, and the United States Navy.

  • Building the Army We Will Need

    Sep 23, 2015

    Failure to correctly estimate the number of soldiers needed or to provide adequate resources to the U.S. Army can lead to a failure of U.S. strategy and subsequent regret. Policymakers should plan and resource a larger ground force to meet the commitments that the United States has made.

  • Chinese Threats to U.S. Surface Ships

    Sep 14, 2015

    Discussion about China's military modernization has included little comparative analysis of Chinese and U.S. military capabilities. This brief focuses on improvements to China's ability to target U.S. surface ships, especially aircraft carriers.

  • U.S. and Chinese Air Superiority Capabilities

    Sep 14, 2015

    Discussion about China's military modernization has included little comparative analysis of Chinese and U.S. military capabilities. This brief focuses on improvements to China's ability to contest U.S. air superiority in an Asian conflict.

  • Chinese Attacks on U.S. Air Bases in Asia

    Sep 14, 2015

    Discussion about China's military modernization has included little comparative analysis of Chinese and U.S. military capabilities. This brief focuses on improvements to China's ability to disrupt or degrade U.S. operations by attacking air bases.

  • An Interactive Look at the U.S.-China Military Scorecard

    Sep 14, 2015

    To advance the public debate, RAND Project AIR FORCE used open, unclassified sources to compile 'The U.S.-China Military Scorecard: Forces, Geography, and the Evolving Balance of Power.' Use this interactive graphic to explore the operational areas covered in the report.

  • Tallying the U.S.-China Military Scorecard: Relative Capabilities and the Evolving Balance of Power, 1996–2017

    Sep 14, 2015

    Discussion about China's military modernization has focused on new weapon systems, with little comparative analysis of Chinese and U.S. military forces and development. This brief summarizes a RAND Project AIR FORCE study that seeks to fill this gap.

  • China's Military Modernization Increasingly Challenges U.S. Defense Capabilities in Asia

    Sep 14, 2015

    Although China continues to lag behind the United States in terms of aggregate military hardware and operational skills, it has improved its capabilities relative to those of the U.S. in many critical areas. Moreover, China does not need to catch up fully in order to challenge U.S. ability to conduct effective military operations near the Chinese mainland.

  • Behavioral Health and Service Use Among Civilian Wives of Service Members and Veterans

    Aug 24, 2015

    Are there obstacles to behavioral health care access for service members and veterans of the U.S. military and their families? Concerns for individuals covered by the U.S. Department of Defense Military Health System and the Veterans Health Administration drive this examination of the utilization of behavioral health care among current or former wives of service members and veterans.

  • What Works Best When Building Partner Capacity in Challenging Contexts?

    Aug 21, 2015

    Strategic imperatives sometimes compel the United States to work with partner nations that lack the characteristics that favor success in building partner capacity. What can the United States do in such contexts to maximize prospects for success? Potential challenges and workarounds, are examined to derive recommendations for future engagements.

  • War on the Web

    Jul 23, 2015

    While the U.S. Cyber Command is preparing the nation's defenses for the coming ramp-up in cyberwarfare-like attacks, the messages spread instantly by hordes of attackers through social media may not be receiving the attention they deserve.

  • Family Resilience in the Military

    Jul 10, 2015

    The U.S. Department of Defense has 26 policies related to family resilience, but definitions of the term vary across the services. To facilitate a comprehensive view of family resilience programming, a well-articulated, standard definition of family resilience is needed.

  • Tankering Fuel on U.S. Air Force Transport Aircraft: An Assessment of Cost Savings

    Jun 23, 2015

    In an assessment of nearly 95,000 U.S. Air Force flights from 2012, it was determined that tankering fuel would generate cost savings under some circumstances—even without access to market fuel price data.

  • Air National Guard Remotely Piloted Aircraft and Domestic Missions

    Jun 22, 2015

    Air National Guard (ANG) remotely piloted aircrafts (RPAs) may be useful in responding to a variety of domestic threats and potential emergencies. However, there are congressional concerns, as well as operational and policy constraints to be addressed.

  • CASI Advances Understanding of China Aerospace Capabilities

    Jun 22, 2015

    The China Aerospace Studies Institute (CASI) is a partnership of Headquarters U.S. Air Force, the Air University, and RAND to advance understanding of the capabilities, operating concepts, and limitations of China's aerospace forces.

  • Survey System for Addressing Abuse and Misconduct During Basic Military Training

    Jun 18, 2015

    When integrated into an overall feedback system, a survey can help leaders detect and identify ways to reduce abuse and misconduct during basic military training. Results may provide a more complete picture of "ground truth" and help point toward corrective actions.