Jonathan Balk

Research Assistant
Santa Monica Office


B.S. in aerospace engineering, University of California-Los Angeles


Jonathan Balk is a research assistant at the RAND Corporation. His work focuses on a wide range of issues related to technology development & assessment, space policy & technology, and topics in national security. Recently, he has supported projects that investigated proliferated low earth orbit (LEO) constellations, supply chain vulnerabilities, and the role emerging technologies are playing across different domains. To support this research and analysis he has helped develop modeling and simulation tools. Prior to joining The RAND Corporation he worked as an engineer at a major defense prime contractor in support of a low earth orbit technology demonstrator satellite. The primary goal of the program was to demonstrate in space additive manufacturing and assembly. The work was done for NASA in conjunction with a small commercial space company. Additionally, he spent time in business development where he analyzed foreign defense acquisition policy and explored equipping unmanned aerial systems (UAS) with additional capabilities. Balk received his bachelor's degree in aerospace engineering and a minor in political science from the University of California - Los Angeles.