Richard H. Donohue

Richard H. Donohue
Policy Researcher; Director, RAND Center for Quality Policing


Ph.D. in criminology and criminal justice, University of Massachusetts-Lowell; M.A. in criminal justice, University of Massachusetts-Lowell; M.A. in international tourism, University of Limerick; B.A. in history, Virginia Military Institute


Richard (Dic) Donohue is a policy researcher at RAND’s Boston office. His primary areas of research focus on homeland security and law enforcement issues, including training, police-community relations, and recruitment/retention. Donohue has led Homeland Security Operational Analysis Center projects and tasks on law enforcement firearms qualifications, workforce assessments, and terrorism/targeted violence data evaluations. He is currently a member of the International Association of Chiefs of Police Education and Training Policy Council and has recently published in Policing: An International Journal and the International Journal of Police Science & Management.  Prior to joining RAND, Donohue retired as a sergeant from the MBTA Transit Police Department, where he was awarded the George L. Hanna Medal of Honor and was recognized as a 2014 “Top Cops” recipient. He also worked as an instructor for the Bureau of Justice Assistance’s VALOR Officer Safety and Wellness Program and served as naval officer, in addition to volunteering with the American Red Cross. Donohue completed his Ph.D. in criminology and criminal justice from the University of Massachusetts Lowell. He also holds an M.A. in criminal justice from the University of Massachusetts Lowell, an M.A. in international tourism from the University of Limerick, and a B.A. in history from the Virginia Military Institute.

Selected Publications

Donohue, Richard H., Kruis, Nathan E., "Comparing the effects of academy training models on recruit competence: does curriculum instruction type matter?" Policing: An International Journal, 2020

Kruis, Nathan E., Choi, Jaeyong, and Donohue, R.H., "Police officers, stigma, and the opioid epidemic," International Journal of Police Science & Management, 22(4), 2020

Donohue, Richard, "Changing Police Roles in Response to the Opioid Epidemic: Massachusetts Departments as a Model for the Country," Law Enforcement Executive Forum, 18(4), 2018

Donohue, Richard, "Shades of Blue: A Review of the Hiring, Recruitment, and Selection of Female and Minority Police Officers," The Social Science Journal, 2019




  • Workforce Development

    A Way Forward for Police Recruiting

    Police recruiting is in a prolonged crisis. Without sufficient numbers of quality recruits, no amount of planning, strategies, or programs will succeed. It is critical to draw from a pool of interested persons who are diverse, technologically adept, and who have a spirit of community service.

    Dec 16, 2022

    Police Chief

  • Crime and Violence Prevention

    A Toolkit for Avoiding Mass Shootings

    RAND has developed an online educational toolkit to provide practical strategies and guidance on deterring, mitigating, and responding to mass attacks. Research highlights three top ways to mitigate and/or respond to mass attacks right now: through proactive prevention, relentless follow-up, and diligent preparation and training.

    Jul 14, 2022

    United Press International

  • Logistics Management

    COVID-19 Vaccination: Expect the Unexpected

    With emergency use authorization for the first COVID-19 vaccine now in place, states and localities have turned their focus to the logistics of dispensing it as quickly as feasible. Still, uncertainties abound. It is essential to build a process of learning into the plan.

    Dec 15, 2020

    The RAND Blog

  • Police-Community Relations

    Police Officers: This Article Will Make You Better at Combatting Misinformation

    By deliberately addressing misinformation, police officers can promote safe and healthy behaviors among those in their communities. The actions they take to combat misinformation and improve protections in their communities are a critical part of the collective campaign to end the pandemic and help people return to their normal lives.

    Aug 24, 2020