Persian Gulf Region

The Persian Gulf region — which includes Iran, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, and Iraq — contains an estimated 50 percent of the world's oil reserves and thus plays a strategic geopolitical role. RAND has a strong presence in and focus on the region, with an office in Doha, focusing primarily on domestic and regional issues such as education and development and on assisting U.S. and allied military forces in the region.

  • Blog

    Facing Syrian Realities

    President Barack Obama’s upcoming trip to Saudi Arabia to meet with King Abdullah offers an opportunity to engage in a much needed dialogue about the future of the conflict in Syria and to hear what a strong ally and friend has to say about stability in the region.

    Feb 28, 2014

  • News Release

    Qatar Foundation and RAND Corporation to Conclude RQPI Agreement

    Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development and RAND Corporation will complete a decade-long agreement that resulted in the establishment of the RAND Qatar Policy Institute (RQPI) in Doha.

    Dec 23, 2013

  • Blog

    A First Step in Geneva

    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.

    Nov 25, 2013

  • Blog

    We're Close to a Good Deal with Iran. Why Sabotage It?

    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.

    Nov 21, 2013

  • Blog

    The Geneva Blame Game

    Iran and the P5+1 (the U.S., Britain, France, China, and Russia plus Germany) came tantalizingly close to reaching a nuclear deal this past weekend in Geneva, but the talks ended without an agreement. Although both Iran and the United States expressed optimism that much was achieved, a blame game between the different players soon ensued.

    Nov 15, 2013

  • Blog

    America's Great Yellow School Buses

    One of the things taken for granted in the United States is the vast network of school buses—about 26 million children ride 480,000 buses every day. But in other parts of the world, getting millions of children to and from the right school, on time, safely, and for a reasonable cost is a significant challenge.

    Sep 9, 2013

  • Blog

    By Land and by Sea

    There are good reasons for the United States to rethink how it counterbalances Iran, reassures local allies, and projects power with fewer resources. However, tying down large numbers of fighter aircraft in the Gulf is likely only to exacerbate old problems and create new ones.

    Jul 22, 2013

  • Blog

    The Middle East's Science Revolution?

    Even as conflict rages, a wave of research and innovation in Arabian Gulf countries is bringing with it significant investment in science and research infrastructure — and even U.S.-style universities, writes Shelly Culbertson.

    Jun 27, 2013

  • Blog

    Putting the Spring in the Arab Spring

    Qatar has a salsa scene. Dubai hosted the big international Fujairah Latin Festival. The Oman Salsa Festival took place in March. Jordan and Cairo both have a salsa scene. What makes this so conversation-worthy is that it is indicative of a growing cultural openness in parts of the Middle East.

    Jun 17, 2013

  • Report

    Knowledge-Based Economies and Basing Economies on Knowledge: Skills a Missing Link in GCC Countries

    Assesses the development of Gulf Cooperation Council countries in the various dimensions of a knowledge-based economy.

    Jun 4, 2013

  • Periodical

    RAND Extends Global Reach of Innovation

    Stimulating innovation is important to the economic growth of all countries, regardless of their stages of development. President and CEO Michael Rich discusses how RAND is helping foster technological innovation in China, Europe, and the Middle East.

    Feb 5, 2013

  • Blog

    RAND Extends Global Reach of Innovation

    Stimulating innovation is important to the economic growth of all countries, regardless of their stages of development. President and CEO Michael Rich discusses how RAND is helping foster technological innovation in China, Europe, and the Middle East.

    Feb 5, 2013

  • Blog

    Al Qaeda Threat to U.S. Embassy in Yemen Raises Questions

    As in most war zones and high threat environments, one of the dangers to guard against is complacency...people become accustomed to a certain level of danger and assume that they have everything under control, when in fact they may have not fully thought through the problems posed by an enemy that is continually innovating, writes William Young.

    Jan 4, 2013

  • Blog

    The Mirage of the Arab Spring

    Like it or not, the United States counts among its allies a number of authoritarian Arab countries, and they are essential partners in protecting its interests, writes Seth G. Jones. The normative hope that liberal democracy may flourish in the future must be balanced by the need to work with governments and societies as they exist today.

    Jan 3, 2013

  • Journal Article

    Reforming the Qatari School System

    Qatar's education system now includes independent schools, internationally-accredited and well-respected private schools, and a tuition vouchers program that may spur further expansion of the private school system.

    Jan 1, 2013

  • News Release

    RAND Stanton Research Fellows Issue New Studies Examining Nuclear Security Issues

    Three Stanton Nuclear Security Fellows at the RAND Corporation—Robert Reardon, Markus Schiller, and David Kearn—have published new research examining nuclear security issues.

    Oct 2, 2012

  • Blog

    Will Iran Close the Strait of Hormuz?

    Just by threatening to close the Strait, Iran increases pressure on the U.S. to restrain Israel from attacking Iran. Other key players—including major oil importers such as China, Japan, and India—would be reluctant to support military action because of heavy dependence on Persian Gulf oil, writes Alireza Nader.

    Oct 2, 2012

  • Report

    Containing Iran: Strategies for Addressing the Iranian Nuclear Challenge

    Iran's nuclear program is one of this century's principal foreign policy challenges. Despite U.S., Israeli, and allied efforts, Iran has an extensive enrichment program and likely has the technical capacity to produce at least one nuclear bomb if it so chose. This study assesses U.S. policy options, identifies a way forward, and considers how the United States might best mitigate the negative international effects of a nuclear-armed Iran.

    Sep 27, 2012

  • Report

    Historical Lessons for Creating Local Defense Forces for Afghanistan and Beyond

    Lessons learned from past cases of local defense forces used in the context of counterinsurgency—in Indochina, Algeria, South Vietnam, Oman, El Salvador, Southern Lebanon, Afghanistan, and Iraq—can be applied to the current development of the Afghan Local Police.

    Sep 18, 2012

  • Report

    Sustaining the Qatar National Research Fund

    In order to sustain itself, the Qatar National Research Fund (QNRF) will need to make measurable progress toward achieving its mission of fostering a research culture in Qatar. The QNRF must also evolve its governance structure and related infrastructure to accommodate potential new responsibilities.

    Aug 22, 2012