Andrew R. Morral

Andrew R. Morral
Senior Behavioral Scientist, Director of the National Collaborative on Gun Violence Research
Washington Office


Ph.D. in psychology, New School for Social Research

Media Resources

This researcher is available for interviews.

To arrange an interview, contact the RAND Office of Media Relations at (310) 451-6913, or email

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Andrew R. Morral is a senior behavioral scientist at the RAND Corporation, coleader with Rosanna Smart of Gun Policy in America, a RAND initiative to understand the effects of gun policies, and director of the National Collaborative on Gun Violence Research, a philanthropy that has awarded more than $21m in research funding to non-RAND researchers across the country. His expertise includes program evaluation, modeling and simulation, survey research, and performance measurement. He has developed innovative techniques for examining drug use epidemiology and survey response accuracy, and causal modeling software that is now widely used. In addition to his gun policy work, his recent research includes studies examining the prevalence and characteristics of sexual assaults of members of the U.S. military. Morral has published dozens of peer-reviewed reports, and has served as a science advisor to the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, to the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) Center for Risk and Economic Analysis of Terrorist Events, and to the DHS Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards program. He holds a Ph.D. in psychology from New School for Social Research.

Recent Projects

  • Gun Policy in America: A RAND Initiative
  • The National Collaborative on Gun Violence Research
  • Sexual assault and harassment in the U.S. Armed Forces
  • Identifying and Reducing Inequities in the Effects of Firearm Policies

Selected Publications

Andrew Morral and Rosanna Smart, "Better data, less gun violence," Science, 377, 2022

Andrew Morral and Rosanna Smart, "A new era for firearm violence prevention research.," Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), 328(12), 2022

Schell, Cefalu, Griffin, Smart and Morral, "Changes in firearm mortality following the implementation of state laws regulating firearm access and use," Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2020, 2020

Smart, Rosanna, Andrew R. Morral, Rajeev Ramchand, Amanda Charbonneau, Jhacova Williams, Sierra Smucker, Samantha Cherney, and Lea Xenakis, The Science of Gun Policy: A Critical Synthesis of Research Evidence on the Effects of Gun Policies in the United States, Third Edition, RAND Corporation (RR-A243-4), 2023

Schell, Peterson, Vegetabile, Scherling, Smart, R. and Morral, State-Level Estimates of Household Firearm Ownership., RAND Corporation (TL-354), 2020

Morral, Andrew R., Terry L. Schell, Sexual Assault of Sexual Minorities in the U.S. Military, RAND Corporation (RR-A1390-1), 2021

Schell, T.L, Griffin, B.A., Morral, A.R. , Evaluating Methods to Estimate the Effect of State Laws on Firearms Deaths: A Simulation Study. , RAND Corporation: Santa Monica. (RR-2685), 2018

Morral, Andrew R., Gore, Kristie L., Schell, Terry L., Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment in the US Military, Volumes 1-6, RAND (RR-870), 2018

Honors & Awards

  • 2015 President's Award, Michael Rich, President and CEO of RAND
  • 2018 Leonard Schaefer Award, Michael Rich, President and CEO of RAND

Recent Media Appearances

Interviews: Christian Science Monitor Daily; JAMA Network; KQED-FM; Modern Healthcare Online; New Scientist; PBS NewsHour Online; Texas Public Radio; WICD-TV


  • Gun Policy

    Addressing Gun Violence Requires Better Means of Measuring It

    Proposals to reduce firearm violence in the United States are often controversial, sometimes because there are no data demonstrating their effectiveness. The federal government has many of the requisite tools in place to collect the data, and it does it well on a wide range of other problems. Shying away from measuring this problem may also make it more difficult to fix it.

    Feb 13, 2023


  • Gun Policy

    Responding to the Firearm Violence Crisis: Are Some Newly Enacted Laws Making Things Worse?

    Persuasive scientific evidence is accumulating for several commonly implemented laws. Where the science is strong, lawmakers would be wise to consider it when making decisions about how to protect public safety while preserving civil liberties, including the right to bear arms.

    Jan 25, 2023

    USA Today

  • Gun Violence

    Historic Research Conference Combats the Rise in Gun Violence

    With new funding for gun violence prevention research, projects are beginning to produce findings. To capitalize on the new findings and help integrate the growing field of researchers working on gun violence prevention, RAND partnered with other research programs to organize the 2022 National Research Conference on Firearm Injury Prevention.

    Dec 9, 2022

    The RAND Blog

  • Gun Violence

    Better Data, Less Gun Violence

    If the United States is serious about fixing the escalating problem of gun violence, the government needs to measure it. Research that is supported by new funding is overdue but will be hampered until federal and state firearm violence data systems improve.

    Oct 5, 2022


  • Gun Policy

    A New Era for Firearm Violence Prevention Research

    Despite many remaining obstacles, the United States may soon have research that clarifies many of the unanswered questions about firearm violence and its prevention. Many critical research questions, neglected for decades, may now benefit from recent federal and private research funding that has supported a surge in research.

    Oct 4, 2022

    Journal of the American Medical Association

  • Gun Policy

    Facts Still Matter, Even If the Court Signals Otherwise

    The Supreme Court's recent decision in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen threatens to render decades of scientific studies legally irrelevant. But there is still room for research to inform court decisions about firearm regulations.

    Oct 4, 2022


  • Gun Policy

    State Gun Regulations Are a Messy Patchwork. The Supreme Court's Bruen Decision Won't Help

    The Supreme Court's decision may not actually narrow the policy gap between states sharply divided over their approach to regulating guns. Rather, its result may not look very different than what we have today—a patchwork of laws that often reflect political and policy demands of individual states.

    Aug 22, 2022

    The Hill

  • Gun Policy

    The Gun Laws That Work, and the Gun Laws That Don't

    Are certain gun laws and regulations likely to improve or worsen public safety? At a time when many Americans are searching for solutions to the country's intolerably high rates of gun violence, social scientists can help provide answers.

    May 27, 2022

    The Washington Post

  • Sexual Assault

    Military Must Better Understand Sexual Assaults to Combat Them

    Sexual minorities in the U.S. military represent about 12 percent of the active-duty population. But they account for an estimated 43 percent of those who are sexually assaulted. This raises critical questions for the Pentagon as it tries to reduce the 20,000 sexual assaults in the ranks each year.

    Jun 22, 2021

    The Hill

  • Gun Policy

    COVID-19 Reveals Need for More Research About Guns

    Recent reports suggest that Americans reacted to the pandemic by purchasing guns and ammunition in massive numbers. What does this mean for public safety? And how can policymakers ensure that this doesn't result in more injuries or deaths?

    Jun 18, 2020

    USA Today

  • Crime and Violence Prevention

    'Stand Your Ground' Laws May Be Causing More Harm Than Good

    Americans have debated whether “stand your ground” laws or gun-free zones make us safer or less safe for decades. These are debates about factual matters that are, in principle, knowable. Without research on these and other topics, bad laws will inadvertently be passed or retained.

    Sep 12, 2019

    Orlando Sentinel

  • Gun Violence

    How to Bring Facts into the Gun Policy Debate

    As debate continues to rage over the causes and prevention of gun violence, it's worth asking how science can help lawmakers and the public resolve longstanding disagreements that have stood in the way of solutions.

    Mar 9, 2018

    USA Today

  • Military Acquisition and Procurement

    Improving DHS Accountability for Acquisitions

    While management at the Department of Homeland Security progressed in many areas during the past decade, there is still plenty of room for growth and improvement, especially in the area of acquisition management.

    Apr 22, 2014

    The RAND Blog

  • Wildfires

    Investing in Firefighting

    While the U.S. Forest Service has not completely agreed with RAND's proposal to transition to a fleet dominated by water-dropping scooper aircraft for fighting fires, they have leased one CL-415 scooper aircraft. It might be more cost-effective for the USFS to simply purchase it outright.

    Dec 30, 2013

    The Orange County Register

  • Is Enforcement Key to Fixing America's Immigration System?

    The current debate regarding comprehensive immigration reform offers an opportunity to redesign the worksite immigration enforcement system to achieve more efficient enforcement with better intelligence on where undocumented workers are employed, say Andrew Morral and Peter Brownell.

    Feb 15, 2013


  • Gun Violence

    Firearms and Gun Control: Many Questions, Some Answers

    President Obama's task force on gun violence has raised the stakes in the policy debate on gun control and policy in the wake of the recent shootings in Colorado and Connecticut. Some of RAND's top researchers share what is, and what isn't, known about firearms and gun control.

    Jan 17, 2013

    The RAND Blog

  • Focus on the Worst Ex-Cons and Boost Community-Based Rehab

    Focus on the Worst Ex-Cons and Boost Community-Based Rehab in Riverside Press-Enterprise

    May 27, 2007

    Riverside Press-Enterprise