Economics is a discipline concerned with the consumption, production, and transfer of wealth by and among individuals (microeconomics) and communities or nations (macroeconomics); subspecialties range from economic development and planning to health economics and international economic relations. RAND's many economists contribute to multidisciplinary research projects by exploring the intersections where economics informs social, military, and governmental policy decisions.
In response to an inquiry from The Nelson Report, RAND's Scott Harold offered some thoughts on China's new air defense zone policy and how Japan and South Korea could be brought closer together by their respective responses.
The Geneva agreement is only a first step toward a comprehensive deal but it is an important achievement. Iran's ability to move toward a nuclear weapons breakout capability has been halted in return for limited sanctions relief.
On the one hand, U.S. negotiators must convince their Iranian counterparts that the United States is serious about offering genuine sanctions relief in return for Tehran making concessions on its nuclear ambitions. On the other hand, the negotiating team must also assuage the concerns of allies and members of Congress.
It appears that Iran and the P5+1 are close to agreeing for Tehran to suspend major aspects of its program, including the enrichment of uranium to a medium level of 20 percent, and installation of more advanced centrifuges, in return for reversible and limited easing of sanctions.
The Nov. 7–8 negotiations between Iran and six world powers (the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Russia, China and Germany) could prove to be a critical point in the Iranian nuclear crisis. New sanctions under consideration by Congress could lead to a weakening of the overall U.S. position.
Sanctions have taken a heavy toll on the Iranian economy, and the Islamic Republic may finally be motivated to take steps to rein in its nuclear program, including accepting limits on uranium enrichment, in exchange for lessening the pressure.
The average Somali lives on less than $2 a day. Even fishermen, who are comparatively well off by national standards, face difficulties making a living due to the chronic depletion of sea stocks from years of poaching and illegal dumping of toxic waste. Under such circumstances, the allure of piracy is clear.
Between 2001 and 2011, China's pledged foreign aid was $671 billion. In all regions and countries, China's assistance focuses on the development of natural resources, principally energy-related (coal, oil, and gas). Both parties presumably benefit from China's aid but both are also exposed to added risks and hidden costs.
Washington now has to ask itself whether its goals can best be met with these restrictions in place or whether it is time to recognize the fundamental changes that are taking place in Myanmar and forge a new relationship with its leaders based on full government-to-government relations, writes Peter Chalk.
Out-of-pocket spending on health care will decrease for both the newly insured as well as for those changing their source of insurance. These decreases will be largest for those who would otherwise be uninsured.
For a region that has seen decades of strife, Kurdistan is emerging as “the other Iraq,” a place where progress is marked by the opening of new shopping malls and the pouring of concrete at countless construction sites.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's plans for reviving Japan's economy after two decades of stagnation differ sharply from the policies pursued by the United States and the European Union to recover from the deep recession of 2008–2009.
The resolution of Iran's nuclear crisis does not only depend on U.S.-Iranian relations, but also on other factors including the fate of three Iranian prisoners.
Resolving the question of whether or not the U.S. has finally gotten a handle on health care spending is vitally important, because the choices we make going forward will have profound implications for our economy, the financial wellbeing of millions of American families, and ultimately America's standing in the world.
If greater co-ordination were possible across European nations — allied to a more professional cadre of soldiers — far fewer troops would be required, writes Matt Bassford. A reduction in land forces could deliver savings of approximately €6.5 billion in wage costs alone.
Competition from American industry would help drive Chinese firms to be more socially responsible and generate greater benefits for African communities, write Larry Hanauer and Lyle Morris.
The imposition of sanction after sanction without a clear diplomatic approach may convince Iran's leadership that the United States seeks regime implosion and overthrow rather than a solution to the nuclear crisis, write Alireza Nader and Colin H. Kahl.
Rouhani may improve the economy in pursuing his underlying goal to preserve the Islamic system, writes Alireza Nader. But not all Iranians would be satisfied with just economic improvements. Many want greater freedom of expression and a bigger say in the political system.
It was widely assumed that Atlanta's Grady Memorial Hospital would be the next storied public hospital close its doors, but at its darkest hour, it received help from an unexpected quarter, says Art Kellermann.
The Obama-Xi dialogue offers an opportunity to clarify both countries' interests in Africa and remove a potential irritant to U.S.-Chinese bilateral relations, write Larry Hanauer and Lyle Morris.