Anu Narayanan

Photo of Anu Narayanan
Associate Director, Forces and Logistics Program, RAND Arroyo Center; Professor, Pardee RAND Graduate School; Senior Engineer
Pittsburgh Office


Ph.D. in engineering and public policy, Carnegie Mellon University; B.S. in applied mathematics, University of Texas at Austin

Media Resources

This researcher is available for interviews.

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Anu Narayanan is associate director of the Forces and Logistics Program within RAND Arroyo Center, a senior engineer at the RAND Corporation, and professor of policy analysis at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. Her research focuses on the intersection of critical infrastructure and national security. She has led or conducted studies for the Department of the Air Force, the Office of the Secretary of Defense, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Department of Energy on a range of topics including installation resilience to natural hazards and climate change, cybersecurity of the electric power grid, mission assurance, strategic basing, data analytics for critical infrastructure risk management, and disaster response and recovery. Narayanan holds a Ph.D. in engineering and public policy from Carnegie Mellon University

Recent Projects

  • Deterring Attacks Against the Power Grid
  • Valuing Air Force Energy Resilience
  • Characterizing National Vulnerabilities from Infrastructure Disruptions by Natural Disasters
  • RAND Support for the Quadrennial Energy Review
  • Building Resilience to Natural Hazards

Selected Publications

, Grounded: An Enterprise-Wide Look at Department of the Air Force Installation Exposure to Natural Hazards: Implications for Infrastructure Investment Decisionmaking and Continuity of Operations Planning, (RR-A523-1), 2021

, Deterring Attacks Against the Power Grid: Two Approaches for the U.S. Department of Defense, (RR-3187-RC), 2020

, "From Awareness to Action: Accounting for Infrastructure Interdependencies in Disaster Response and Recovery Planning," GeoHealth, 4(8), 2020

Narayanan et al., Valuing Air Force Electric Power Resilience: A Framework for Mission-Level Investment Prioritization, RAND Corporation (RR-2771-AF), 2019

Narayanan et al., Air Force Installation Energy Assurance: An Assessment Framework, RAND Corporation (RR-2066-AF), 2017

Narayanan et al., Characterizing National Exposures to Infrastructure from Natural Disasters: Data and Methods Documentation, RAND Corporation (RR-1453/1-DHS), 2016

Narayanan et al., A Modeling Framework for Optimizing F-35A Strategic Basing Decisions to Meet Training Requirements, RAND Corporation (RR-1546-AF), 2016

Anu Narayanan and M. Granger Morgan, "Sustaining Critical Social Services During Extended Regional Power Blackouts," Risk Analysis, 32, 2012


English; Tamil; Telugu


  • A driver walks to his car near an empty gas pump in Falls Church, Virginia, May 12, 2021, photo by Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

    Is DarkSide Really Sorry? Is It Even DarkSide?

    The U.S. military relies heavily on commercial energy assets, making the implications of events like the Colonial Pipeline outage more serious than just higher prices at the gas pump. The origins and severity of an attack dictate what the United States might do in response.

    May 19, 2021 Defense One

  • Engineer Anu Narayanan at the RAND office in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, January 21, 2020, photo by Jim Mendenhall/Pro Photography Network

    Thinking Outside the Grid: Q&A with Anu Narayanan

    Anu Narayanan, an engineer at RAND, is a specialist in what-ifs. Her research focuses on critical infrastructure and national security. In this interview, she discusses her latest work that explores what would happen if a cyberattacker tried to take down the power grid.

    Mar 5, 2020