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Experts Guide

RAND has more than 300 research professionals available for comment to policymakers, journalists, and public officials. Our expertise spans a wide range of public policy issues that impact people around the world including security, health, education, sustainability, growth, and development.

To request an interview, contact the Office of Media Relations at (703) 414-4795 or by email at media@rand.org.

  • A man accesses data from a computer

    Testimony

    Sharing Information About Threats Is Not a Cybersecurity Panacea

    Information-sharing—specifically, threat-centric information-sharing—has dominated recent discussions on improving cybersecurity, but it is not a silver bullet. Its usefulness is tied to certain assumptions about attacks, and while it should be encouraged, it addresses only one facet of a very complex space.

    Mar 4, 2015

  • Russia's President Vladimir Putin and his Belarussian counterpart Alexander Lukashenko (2nd L) attend a signing ceremony during a session of the Supreme State Council of the Union State at the Kremlin in Moscow, March 3, 2015

    Commentary

    Europe Must Spend More on Arms to Deter Putin

    Demonstrations in Greece and elsewhere suggest that the European public may have little sympathy for governments not devoting most efforts to domestic discontent and foreign indebtedness. But the longtime downward trends in European defense spending matter now that Russia has chosen to flex its military might, diminished though it may be.

    Mar 3, 2015

  • Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)

    Essay

    The New Drug Wars

    Modern medicine is built on the promise that antibiotics will clear away the bacteria that made everything from skin infections to surgery potentially lethal just a few generations ago. But drug-resistant strains of disease have spread in recent years.

    Mar 3, 2015

  • U.S. President Barack Obama receives a standing ovation at a joint session of Congress in the chamber of the House of Representatives in Washington, DC, September 8, 2011

    Commentary

    Is Geographic Clustering Driving Political Polarization?

    The ideological gap separating the Republican and Democratic parties in Congress has grown dramatically wider in recent decades. An analysis of the presidential vote in congressional districts over the last 60 years finds that the degree to which most districts are different from the “average” district has grown, supporting the theory that polarization stems from geographic clustering.

    Mar 3, 2015

  • Media Advisory

    The Role of Sleep in Society, Public Policy, to Be Topic at RAND Policy Forum

    RAND behavioral scientist Wendy Troxel will discuss RAND research on sleep and the social environment and why it should factor into such policy decisions as setting school start times, scheduling workers' shifts, and ensuring the health and readiness of U.S. military personnel and their families at a RAND Policy Forum on Mar. 10, 2015, at 6 p.m.

    Mar 3, 2015

  • News Release

    New Tool Can Help Identify Nations That May Be Vulnerable to Ebola or Other Public Health Emergencies

    Public health experts can identify nations that are vulnerable to the occurrence and impact of future outbreaks of Ebola or other emergencies by using a screening tool that evaluates a nation's strengths across a wide range of measures such as political strength and health care capabilities.

    Mar 3, 2015

  • The new issue of satirical French weekly Charlie Hebdo titled 'C'est Reparti' ('Here we go again') in Nice, February 25, 2015

    Commentary

    Predicting the 'Dangerousness' of Potential Terrorists

    Predicting 'dangerousness' of potential terrorists is a hit-and-miss endeavor. Unless someone is waving a gun, it is extremely difficult. Even with direct access to the subject, parole boards, suicide prevention units, and even trained clinicians get it wrong.

    Mar 2, 2015

  • French special intervention police conduct a house-to-house search in Longpont, northeast of Paris, January 8, 2015

    Commentary

    Different Countries, Different Ways of Countering Terrorism

    France and the United States follow different approaches in dealing with terrorist suspects. This divergence reflects differences in the threat, historical experience, law, available resources, and public attitudes. France faces a more serious terrorist threat than the U.S. does.

    Mar 2, 2015

  • NASA astronaut Reid Wiseman works outside the International Space Station's Quest airlock in October 2014

    Commentary

    Don't Worry About Russia Backing Away from Space and WMD Cooperation

    Two symbols of U.S.-Russian cooperation are nearing the end of their life expectancies, the International Space Station and the Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction Program. But both stand as remarkable milestones of achievement and reminders of what can be accomplished when nations put aside political differences for the betterment of humanity.

    Feb 27, 2015

  • Woman comparing soda labels in a supermarket

    Commentary

    Supermarkets Are the Problem

    Thirty percent of all supermarket sales can be attributed to end-of-aisle displays, where retailers have placed more foods that increase the risk of obesity and chronic diseases. Relocating those foods to less conspicuous places would still allow those who want them to get them, but the decision to buy would be deliberate rather than impulsive.

    Feb 26, 2015

  • Houses that Faisal Shahzad and Sinh Vinh Ngo Nguyen lived in before they please guilty to terrorism charges.

    Essay

    Enemies Among Us: What We Know About Homegrown Terrorists

    Dozens of young Americans have attempted to join overseas jihadist groups in the past several years, raising special concern among counterterrorism officials that they might bring the fight home with them when they return.

    Feb 26, 2015

  • A Paris crowd displaying the portraits of five of the people killed during the attack at Charlie Hebdo on January 7, 2015

    Commentary

    Attempting to Understand the Paris Attacks

    The investigation will eventually fill in some of the gaps in our knowledge of the events leading up to the attacks in Paris, but some questions will remain unanswered. Embedded in the unknowns are some of the chronic dilemmas faced by counterterrorist authorities everywhere.

    Feb 26, 2015

  • Dept. of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson and former DHS secretaries Michael Chertoff (R) and Tom Ridge (L) speak to reporters on the need for Congress to pass a full-year appropriations bill for the Homeland Security Department in February 2015

    Testimony

    Watchdog Recommendations to Improve Homeland Security

    The challenges facing the Department of Homeland Security are evolving and create the need for new preparedness and response capabilities. The case for change includes reform recommendations for five critical areas.

    Feb 26, 2015

  • Flood waters from Hurricane Isaac partially submerge homes in Lafitte, Louisiana neighborhoods in August 2012

    Commentary

    Future of Coastal Flooding

    President Obama's executive order that directs federal agencies to plan and build for higher flood levels as they construct new projects in flood-prone regions will affect hundreds of billions of dollars of future public works projects. In an ideal world, planners would estimate the benefits and costs for each project, taking into account everything from the details of the local landscape to the potential for adaptive responses over time.

    Feb 25, 2015

  • News Release

    California Mental Health Prevention Effort Is Showing Positive Early Results

    An effort to improve mental health prevention and early intervention in California is showing positive early results for programs targeted at reducing stigma and discrimination, educating the public about suicide prevention, and improving the mental health of students.

    Feb 24, 2015

  • U.S. President Barack Obama speaks during the White House Summit on Countering Violent Extremism February 19, 2015

    Commentary

    Tackling Radicalization Before It Begins

    Why not turn the question of violent extremism inside out and develop programs that reinforce non-radicalization? That is, rather than eliminating drivers, focus instead on strengthening the factors that inhibit violent extremism.

    Feb 23, 2015

  • Couple getting counseling

    Commentary

    Putting UK Mental Health Services on the Road to Recovery

    If mental health problems are the most significant barrier preventing people on benefits from taking up employment, then why not transform how the system supports them? Policymakers could redirect some of the resources available to the benefit system towards improving mental health outcomes, and put more evidence-based interventions in place. The savings to the benefit system should logically pay for this investment.

    Feb 20, 2015

  • Jeff the Diseased Lung, a tobacco company mascot created by HBO comedy show 'Last Week Tonight'

    Commentary

    Last Week Tonight's Jeff the Diseased Lung Is No Joke

    John Oliver's “Jeff the Diseased Lung,” a cross between a warning label on cigarette packs in Australia and the Marlboro Man, has gone viral while research shows cigarettes are responsible for even more premature deaths than previously thought.

    Feb 20, 2015

  • High-resolution 3D rendering of bacteria under a scanning microscope

    Commentary

    Ringing the Alarm Bell for Antimicrobial Resistance

    The increase in the number of bacterial and viral infections that are resistant to antimicrobial drugs poses a growing global health threat. Recent economic modeling demonstrates the enormous potential costs of these "superbugs."

    Feb 20, 2015

  • Police officer maintaining crowd control

    Testimony

    Performance Metrics to Improve Police-Community Relations

    Changing the way police performance is measured could prevent issues leading to civil rights violations and poor police-community relations. Should California take the lead to recommend that local law enforcement agencies must report performance metrics?

    Feb 20, 2015

    Upcoming Events

  • Sleep's Role in Society and Policy

    Mar 10, 2015

    Sleep deprivation is estimated to cost U.S. businesses more than $150 billion per year in absences, accidents, and lost productivity. Learn about RAND research on sleep and why it should factor into such policy decisions as setting school start times, scheduling workers' shifts, and ensuring the health and readiness of U.S. military personnel and their families.

  • Past Events

  • The Use of Long-Range Armed Drones: Fact v. Myth

    Mar 3, 2015

    The Obama administration announced a new policy setting standards for exporting and using armed drones which will allow for the wider export of armed drones to allied nations. A panel of RAND experts will seek to dispel some of the myths that have arisen with respect to the use of long-range armed drones.

  • Meet the Real Scorpion

    Feb 18, 2015

    The CBS TV show Scorpion tells the story of an international network of super-geniuses who form the last line of defense against the complex threats of the modern age. The real-life inspiration for the show, Walter O'Brien, will explain how his company applies high IQ, computer science, and artificial intelligence to mitigate risk and solve global problems.