National Security

RAND conducts a broad array of national security research for the U.S. Department of Defense. RAND also carries out an extensive research program in homeland security, homeland defense, and terrorism-related research for the U.S. Government, as well as selected research for key allied governments and ministries of defense. Through its long-term investment in federally funded research and development centers (FFRDCs), the U.S. government has built a network of institutions with unique analytical and technical capabilities.

National security research is conducted by the following RAND FFRDCs: RAND Project AIR FORCE, sponsored by the U.S. Air Force; RAND Arroyo Center, sponsored by the U.S. Army; RAND National Defense Research Institute, sponsored by the Office of the Secretary of Defense; RAND Homeland Security Operational Analysis Center, sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security.

Latest Research

  • Soldiers of China's PLA take part in a joint multinational U.N. peacekeeping military exercise with troops from Pakistan, Mongolia, and Thailand, in Henan province, China, September 15, 2021, photo by Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters

    China's Overseas Military Diplomacy and Implications for U.S. Interests

    As the U.S.-China competition intensifies, military diplomacy is one of the tools that China could potentially use to gain advantage. What are some ways that China’s military diplomacy activities could challenge U.S. interests? And what are some recommendations for U.S. policymakers?

    Jan 26, 2023

  • U.S. Army soldiers and French soldiers conduct a water obstacle course at Camp Papeari Tahiti, French Polynesia, May 11, 2022, photo by Master Sgt. Shelia L. Cooper/U.S. Army

    Greater Cooperation in the Indo-Pacific Could Benefit U.S. and French Armies

    The United States and France already share objectives in the Indo-Pacific. They could cooperate further to increase dialogue and information-sharing, engage in more combined partnering with other countries, and broaden their participation in exercises and training in the region.

    Jan 25, 2023

  • Ukrainian servicemen are seen near the frontline in Soledar, Donetsk region, Ukraine, January 23, 2023, photo by Oleksandr Ratushniak/Reuters

    Avoiding a Long War in Ukraine

    The United States has a strong interest in avoiding a long war in Ukraine. Although Washington cannot alone determine the war's duration, it can take steps to make an eventual negotiated peace more likely.

    Jan 25, 2023

  • A giant yellow cone looms over naval personnel, photo by John Williams/U.S. Navy

    International Basic Research Collaboration at the U.S. Department of Defense

    Is there a way to integrate international scientific thought leaders into U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) networks? The RAND National Defense Research Institute examined how DoD can improve how it uses international basic research collaboration.

    Jan 23, 2023

  • U.S. Air Force aircraft in a capabilities demonstration in honor of the U.S. Air Force's 75th Anniversary at Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, August 12, 2022, photo by Tech. Sgt. Timothy Moore/U.S. Air Force

    Bolstering U.S. Air Bases Against Chinese and Russian Attacks

    There's a growing consensus that China and Russia represent major threats to U.S. interests and there are calls to counter the threats cost-effectively. Air base resilience requires close familiarity with the threat, a systematic approach for addressing it, and sustained efforts to build on investments in protection.

    Jan 17, 2023

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