RAND Gulf States News


  • Members of the Cajun Navy transport loggers to clear power lines after Tropical Storm Florence caused massive flooding in Whiteville, North Carolina, September 17, 2018, photo by Randall Hill/Reuters

    What's Missing From Community Disaster Response? The Whole Community

    Nov 9, 2020

    Across the United States, significant gaps exist in disaster response needs and capabilities. Community volunteers have stepped up to fill those gaps where possible. They may need more support and resources.

  • Aerial photograph of the devastation caused in the greater New Orleans area following Hurricane Katrina, August 30, 2005, photo by Vincent Laforet/Pool/Reuters

    Planning for a COVID-19 Hurricane

    May 4, 2020

    What if Hurricane Katrina had hit during a pandemic? Emergency planners can prepare for this scenario by evaluating current response system capacity, evacuation and sheltering procedures, food and supply issues, and more.

  • Hurricane Katrina, photo by bernard/AdobeStock

    Leveraging Artificial Intelligence for Disaster Prediction, Resilience, and Recovery

    Feb 18, 2020

    RAND will host a conference on the role of artificial intelligence in natural disaster prediction, resiliency enhancement, and recovery efforts. U.S. and Japanese experts will offer insights drawn from numerous instances of disasters. [New Orleans, LA]

  • Man in server room, photo by anandaBGD/Getty Images

    How to Build Successful Workforce Development Programs and Career Pathways

    Dec 18, 2019

    RAND researchers will share findings from recent major studies that examined how education policies and job training programs in New Orleans and Louisiana are supporting better outcomes for those living in the region. [New Orleans, LA]

  • A teacher and a student presenting to class, photo by FatCamera/Getty Images

    Elevating Teacher Voices, Along with Their Salaries to Professionalize Teaching in Louisiana

    Sep 18, 2019

    Salary raises have a direct impact on teachers' day-to-day lives. But efforts like those in Louisiana to elevate teachers' voices, and not just their salaries, are more likely to make a real difference for the teaching profession by creating a clear career ladder. The state's efforts could also be cultivating a teaching force that is providing students with the curricula and instruction they need to achieve at higher levels.

  • A boy on a bicycle cools off from the extreme heat from an opened fire hydrant in Brooklyn, New York, July 2, 2018

    Triaging Climate Change

    Jan 23, 2019

    There are many opportunities to manage climate risk around the world, but not everything can be saved. Delaying triage of climate damages could leave societies making ad hoc decisions instead of focusing on protecting the things they value most.

  • Work crews on boats gather to clean marshland impacted by oil from the Deepwater Horizon spill in the Barataria Bay of Louisiana, June 17, 2010.

    Overlapping Environmental Disasters Put a Strain on Gulf Communities

    Nov 29, 2018

    For Gulf Coast residents, dealing with the impact of the Deepwater Horizon disaster is challenging enough. With the Taylor Energy spill, they may face an even more daunting recovery, one that could take decades. Acknowledging the extent and complexity of recovery is the first step toward supporting coastal communities to build their resilience in the face of overlapping disasters.

  • Teacher Darcy McKinnon teaches math to her seventh grade class at Samuel J. Green Charter School in New Orleans, Louisiana, February 22, 2006

    Louisiana's Education System Is Evolving: Here's What Parents Need to Know

    Sep 12, 2018

    Louisiana has taken big steps to improve its education policies and the education of the state's children, from birth to grade 12. Parents can help their children benefit from the reforms by being informed about the changes and knowing how to take advantage of new resources.

  • The Federal Emergency Management Agency Headquarters in Washington, U.S., October 5, 2016

    FEMA's Transformation

    Jun 8, 2018

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency's strategic plan shows several shifts in U.S. disaster relief policy. Redirecting longer-term recovery operations to state and local authorities would allow FEMA to concentrate its assets on the catastrophic disasters it is uniquely designed to handle.

  • The Colorado Aqueduct near the Iron Mountain Pumping Plant in Earp, California, April 16, 2015

    How Federal Policy Could Help Water and Wastewater Utilities

    Jan 16, 2018

    A targeted approach could help the federal government address the root causes of infrastructure problems more effectively than a spending initiative that simply spreads money around with the hope that more spending might do some good.

  • Communities are seen surrounded by water and wetlands in Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana, August 25, 2015

    Environmental Impact Bonds May Not Bear Fruit for Green Investors

    Nov 26, 2017

    Investors may be willing to accept a lower return for socially responsible investments, but are environmental impact bonds the best way to leverage these opportunities?

  • SFC Eladio Tirado, who is from Puerto Rico, speaks with residents as he helps during recovery efforts following Hurricane Maria, in San Lorenzo, Puerto Rico, October 7, 2017

    How to Rebuild After This Year's Hurricane Season? Invest in Resilience

    Nov 6, 2017

    Investing in resilience in an informed and systematic way can help a wide range of high-risk communities be better prepared for any future disasters.

  • A watercolor painting of a silhouette profile

    Is Suicide Preventable? Insights from Research

    May 8, 2017

    Conventional wisdom about suicide prevention suggests that one just needs to know what warning signs to look for. But that's not the case.

  • Women and children collecting water from the unimproved water source of Asengo Community. Asengo Community, Kisumu, Kenya

    World Bank Selects Enhancing Climate Resilience of Africa’s Infrastructure as Winner of "Africa Most Impactful Knowledge Product Award"

    Mar 9, 2017

    To celebrate the most impactful research and analysis on African development, the World Bank's Africa Knowledge Fest, held on February 22, 2017 in Washington, D.C., awarded its first-ever "Impact Award" to six project teams. A jury composed of researchers across World Bank units awarded Enhancing the Climate Resilience of Africa's Infrastructure—a project led by the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI), which RAND contributed to, along with KTH—as the second place winner. Robert Lempert and David Groves led the RAND research team for the project, which quantified the impacts of climate change on African water and energy infrastructure, identified and evaluated robust adaptation options, and formulated actionable recommendations for policy makers.


  • Houses in New Orleans, Louisiana

    Why Rents Have Gone Through the Roof in New Orleans and Across the Nation

    Aug 2, 2016

    The rental affordability crisis was caused by declining incomes since 2000, the slowing of new construction, households getting smaller, and the seven million foreclosures during the recession. It is a national problem in need of a national solution.

  • Autonomous self-driving driverless vehicle with radar on the road

    Examining Future Transport Scenarios to Drive Innovation in the UK

    Jun 24, 2016

    The UK’s roads, railways and airports are some of the most congested in the world. RAND Europe, in collaboration with Risk Solutions, explored how emerging technologies might make the transport system more efficient and effective by the year 2035.

  • A senior airman working in defensive cyber operations at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colorado

    Rather Than Fearing 'Cyber 9/11,' Prepare for 'Cyber Katrina'

    Mar 30, 2016

    In 2005, Hurricane Katrina represented a major test of the nation's post-9/11 disaster-response systems. Since that time, the United States has sought to improve those systems, but much more needs to be done in order to properly address the threat of a large-scale cyber attack.

  • Cars stranded in flood waters from Hurricane Irene in lower Manhattan, August 28, 2011

    Why Engineers Need to Be Thinking About Climate Change

    Feb 22, 2016

    As sea levels rise and extreme weather events become more common, evacuation routes in coastal areas will become more important. Transportation engineers need to be more proactive as they try to anticipate damage to pavement, bridges, and culverts.


  • New Orleans, Louisiana, photo by  Pattie Steib/Fotolia

    Findings Shared from Study on Economic Impact of Louisiana Land Loss

    Dec 16, 2015

    RAND's Craig Bond and co-author Stephen Barnes of Louisiana State University presented findings from their evaluation of the economic effects of coastal land loss at a meeting of the Governor's Advisory Commission on Coastal Protection, Restoration, and Conservation.

  • Cement stairs outside of a home in New Orleans

    RAND Experts to Speak at KATRINA@10

    Aug 27, 2015

    Anita Chandra and Gary Cecchine will serve as panelists for KATRINA@10, a special event examining the recovery, return, resilience, and enduring vulnerabilities in the 10 years since Hurricane Katrina.

  • Workers remove oil-soaked grass from a marshland in Bay Jimmy, Louisiana, one year after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, April 2011

    New Research Consortium to Tackle Community Resilience in the Gulf Region

    Feb 17, 2015

    A new research group, the Consortium for Resilient Gulf Communities, will assess and address the public health, social, and economic impacts of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico region. It will focus on determining how communities can build resilience to future disasters.



  • woman carrying umbrella looking up at sky

    Weather Forecasts, and Our Trust in Them, Need to Improve

    Oct 8, 2013

    When scientists predict extreme weather that never materializes, lay people tend to wonder what went wrong. This is a natural tendency that is not tied to a failure of the science, but rather to differences in the way scientists and lay people view predictions about extreme events.

  • Oklahoma tornado cleanup

    Translating Policy Into Action to Build Community Resilience

    Sep 4, 2013

    The philosophy and motivation surrounding community resilience has strongly resonated with community leaders but there remains a divide between how experts articulate resilience policy and how that policy translates to on-the-ground implementation. Building Community Resilience: An Online Training addresses that tension.

  • President Obama delivers a speech on climate change on June 25, 2013

    RAND Experts on Obama's Climate Speech

    Jun 25, 2013

    While President Obama was delivering his speech on climate change at Georgetown University on June 25, some of RAND's energy policy experts were live-tweeting their thoughts on the president's proposals.

  • houses destroyed by Hurricane Sandy

    Planning for Superstorms, Wildfires, and Deep Uncertainty

    Apr 18, 2013

    The path to climate change preparedness should start at the intersection of resilience and robustness — that is, building resilient communities with the individuals and organizations within those communities making robust decisions, ones designed to work well over a wide range of ever-changing conditions.

  • Jordan Fischbach

    In Brief: Jordan R. Fischbach on Adapting to Climate Change on the Coast

    Feb 6, 2013

    In this video, Jordan Fischbach discusses how RAND helped Louisiana develop its 2012 Coastal Master Plan and key lessons that can make other communities more resilient in the face of natural disasters.


  • RAND Supports Development of Louisiana's 2012 Coastal Master Plan

    Jan 13, 2012

    RAND helped Louisiana develop its 2012 Coastal Master Plan to guide the state's coastal investments and help its coastal citizens plan for the future. The plan strikes a balance between providing immediate relief to hard hit areas and laying groundwork for large-scale efforts.


  • Resilient Communities Audio Podcast

    Resilient Communities: Creating a Community of Practice

    Dec 12, 2011

    In this Resilient Communities podcast, Admiral Thad Allen discusses the critical questions confronting the field of community resilience as well as a new toolkit developed by RAND researchers to support community disaster planning.

  • Congressional Briefing Podcast

    A New Way to Pay for Transportation: Exploring a Shift from Fuel Taxes to Mileage-Based User Fees

    Apr 26, 2011

    In this April 2011 Congressional Briefing, Liisa Ecola discusses approaches to funding and conducting system trials designed to help policy and decisionmakers better understand the benefits and trade-offs of mileage-based user fees.

  • Events @ RAND Audio Podcast

    Managing the Unexpected

    Apr 19, 2011

    Admiral Thad Allen, then a senior fellow at RAND, presented “Managing the Unexpected” on April 19, 2011, as part of RAND's Issues in Focus public outreach series. Retired Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard and National Incident Commander for the response to the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, Allen discussed his experiences leading the nation's high-profile response to two national emergencies—the oil spill and Hurricane Katrina.

  • Congressional Briefing Podcast

    Partners in Preparedness: How Governments Can Leverage the Strengths of NGOs in Disaster Preparedness, Response, and Recovery

    Mar 14, 2011

    In this March 2011 Congressional Briefing, behavioral scientist Joie Acosta shares action plans and policy recommendations that emerged from a community conference held on the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. Distinguished panelists include Admiral Thad Allen, now a senior fellow at the RAND Corporation, and Ann Williamson, President and CEO of the Louisiana Association of Nonprofit Organizations.


2009 and earlier

  • Rapid Community Participatory Assessment of Health Care in Post-Storm New Orleans

    Dec. 1, 2009

    A post-Katrina assessment that combined community-based participatory research and rapid assessment procedures identifies health care access challenges, unmet needs, and health system resources in post-storm New Orleans.

  • Promoting Mental Health Recovery After Hurricanes Katrina and Rita

    Oct. 1, 2009

    Evidence-based mental health response is feasible, but requires targeted resources, increased provider capacity, and advanced planning.

  • More Support Is Needed to Integrate Nongovernmental Agencies in Human Recovery from Disasters

    Sep. 23, 2009

    Changing emergency planning rules to make nongovernmental organizations a key component of recovery efforts could get them involved earlier and speed the full recovery of communities after disaster strikes.

  • RAND Helping Charities Demonstrate Return on Investment

    May 8, 2009

    Being able to show results is more important than ever for nonprofits seeking government funding. A recent article in the Chronicle of Philanthropy references RAND's 2005 evaluation of the Nurse-Family Partnership, a nonprofit program that provides nurse home visits to low-income first-time parents and their children. RAND's analysis of the program showed a return on investment of $5.70 for every $1.00 spent. This nonprofit program can demonstrate results, and RAND's analysis made those results clear. RAND supports nonprofit organizations in another way. It operates the Promising Practices Network, a web-based resource that provides high-quality, evidence-based information about practices and programs that improve the lives of children, youth, and families.

  • Displaced New Orleans Residents Survey: Where Are Hurricane Katrina Victims Now?

    July 16, 2008

    The new Displaced New Orleans Residents Survey (DNORS) is designed to examine the current location, well-being, and plans of people who lived in the City of New Orleans when Hurricane Katrina struck in 2005.

  • Long, Unpredictable Delays Found in Louisiana 'The Road Home' Grants to Homeowners

    May 27, 2008

    Louisiana homeowners who sought federally-funded grants through "The Road Home" program for homes damaged by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita have had to wait more than eight months on average to receive grants.

  • RAND Gulf States Policy Institute Awards Grants for Regional Policy Research

    December 17, 2007

    The RAND Gulf States Policy Institute has awarded $466,748 in grants to support four research projects on topics that will stimulate evidence-based policy direction for the Gulf States region.

  • An Economic Redevelopment Plan for New Orleans

    November 28, 2007

    New Orleans should craft a comprehensive economic redevelopment plan that combines public- and private-sector funding with a centralized structure. Total operating costs could run between $2 million and $3 million per year.

  • Schools Not Sustaining Mental Health Aid to Children Displaced by Hurricane Katrina

    October 18, 2007

    Despite strong initial efforts to support the mental health needs of students displaced by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, many schools have not been able to fulfill students' mental health needs over the long term.

  • Lessons Learned from the State and Local Public Health Response to Hurricane Katrina

    October 5, 2007

    This Working Paper is the collected and synthesized public health lessons learned from the response to Hurricane Katrina.

  • Partnership with REACH-NOLA Receives $1.2 Million for New Orleans Mental Health Project

    October 2, 2007

    The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has awarded the RAND Corporation a $1.2 million grant for a two-year project to help develop improved, culturally appropriate mental health services in New Orleans.

  • Repair and Replacement of Affordable Housing Lags in Mississippi's Post-Katrina Recovery

    September 27, 2007

    While construction permits have been issued for approximately 60 percent of the housing damaged by Hurricane Katrina, repair and replacement of multi-unit housing significantly lags behind repair and replacement of single-family homes in three coastal counties in Mississippi heavily damaged by the hurricane.

  • RAND Gulf States Policy Institute opens office in New Orleans

    August 20, 2007

    The RAND Gulf States Policy Institute is expanding with the addition of a new office in the central business district of New Orleans.

  • Wind Insurance Costly and Scarce on Gulf of Mexico Coast

    July 18, 2007

    Wind insurance costs for businesses have increased dramatically while policy coverage has dwindled, and in some cases risk has shifted from insurers to taxpayers. The scarcity and high cost of wind insurance has delayed some business investments in the Gulf States region.

  • Lessons Learned from the Army's Response to Hurricane Katrina

    June 4, 2007

    The U.S. Army should change the way it plans for domestic emergencies to better support state and local first responders.

  • RAND Gulf States Policy Institute Awards Scholarships for Gulf Research

    May 29, 2007

    The Gulf States Policy Institute has awarded $110,000 in scholarships to six graduate students whose dissertation and research work will stimulate evidence-based policy direction for the region.

  • Improving recruitment and retention in the New Orleans Police Department

    March 30, 2007

    The RAND Center on Quality Policing released a series of practical recommendations for attracting new recruits and retaining serving officers in the post-Katrina New Orleans Police Department. For example, the report notes that the most immediate boost would come from giving junior officers pay raises they have already earned, but not yet received.

  • RAND Child Policy Congressional Newsletter highlights RAND Gulf States studies

    January 31, 2007

    Two studies by the RAND Gulf States Policy Institute are highlighted in the quarterly Child Policy Congressional Newsletter. The first looks at how hurricanes Katrina and Rita have affected the region's public education system. The second examines how schools can help students recover from the more long-lasting consequences of the devastation.

  • RAND Gulf States researcher Lisa Jaycox will be honored with RAND President's Award

    January 30, 2007

    President's Awards recognize individuals whose work exemplifies RAND's two core values of quality and objectivity and who have also recently made exemplary contributions to the RAND community through new business development or fundraising initiatives, outstanding outreach and dissemination efforts, or effective participation in internal activities aimed at improving the efficiency of our research environment. Made possible by the generosity of donors to the RAND Policy Circle, the awards provide staff with research time and support to pursue activities related to career development or exploratory research.

  • Louisiana Students Displaced by Hurricanes May Suffer Academically

    November 30, 2006

    The approximately 200,000 students displaced from public schools by recent hurricanes represent the largest displacement of students in U.S. history. Many of the students missed weeks of schooling and had to adjust to new environments. Only 45% returned to their original schools.

  • Governor Barbour Announces Project to Extend Study of Gulf Coast Housing Needs

    October 24, 2006

    Governor Haley Barbour announced today that the National Association of REALTORS® and the Mississippi Association of REALTORS® have donated $155,000 to enable the RAND Corporation to extend its study of affordable housing needs along the Gulf Coast in Mississippi.

  • Aiding Children in Long-Term Recovery from Traumatic Events

    October 24, 2006

    RAND has released a toolkit that shows how to provide school-based mental health programs for students exposed to violence, natural disasters and other traumatic events. The toolkit will enable schools to help students displaced by natural disasters like Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

  • Advanced Planning Important for Flood Recovery

    October 23, 2006

    Experience shows that communities recover fastest from major floods when all levels of government and the private sector work together to prepare coordinated response plans ahead of time.

  • Providing Health Insurance to Low-Income Children Improves Quality of Life

    September 7, 2006

    Children newly enrolled in a public health insurance program in California reported improvements such as doing better in school, feeling better physically, and getting along better with their peers.

  • Preparedness Exercises for Pandemic Influenza

    July 5, 2006

    New influenza A virus subtypes, similar to those that caused the three pandemics of the 20th century, are likely to emerge in the 21st century. RAND offers a manual of tabletop exercises that can be used by state and local health agencies to help prepare for such a threat.