The phrase “flatten the curve” familiarized Americans with epidemiological models used to estimate virus transmission, cases, and potential deaths from COVID-19. But new models are needed as the country enters a different stage of the crisis.
In this Call with the Experts podcast, RAND researchers say new epidemiological models are needed as the country enters a different stage of the COVID-19 crisis, one in which changed behaviors must be taken into account.
Much like America's aging physical infrastructure, America's digital infrastructure needs updating. To fix these urgent problems, local, state, and federal governments could turn to best practices used in the private sector to develop more reliable software.
Face recognition technologies (FRTs) offer opportunities to improve identification efforts, but they also raise concerns about privacy and bias. Understanding the trade-offs between the utility and risks of FRTs is crucial for evaluating their adoption and implementation.
The need for immediate answers in the face of severe public health and economic distress may create a temptation to relax statistical standards. But urgency should not preclude expert analysis and honest assessments of uncertainty. Mistaken assumptions could lead to counterproductive actions.
To help inform public debate and decision making, RAND Europe explored the uses of cryptocurrencies for illicit or criminal purposes, focusing on the Zcash cryptocurrency, in a research project commissioned by the Electric Coin Company.
Jails produce vast amounts of data because of the expanding scope of services they are expected to provide. However, most jails are not using these data to improve operations or outcomes. A panel of experts identified ways to address this challenge.
Using student data to inform instruction is considered sound educational practice. Many teachers have access to grades, attendance records, and standardized test scores. But they don't all have the skills needed to interpret and use the data. Providing educators with more support could increase their use of student data.
Quantum computers are expected to be powerful enough to break the current cryptography that protects all digital communications. But this scenario is preventable if policymakers take actions now to minimize the harm that quantum computers may cause.
Quantum computers that are exponentially faster than any of our current classical computers and are capable of code-breaking applications could be available in 12 to 15 years, posing major risks to the security of current communications systems.
Quantum computers are expected to revolutionize computing. But hackers may be able to use them to crack the encryption system that protects all digital communications. How soon could this scenario become a reality? And what can be done to prevent it?
The Catholic Church joined with technology companies in February to release the “Rome Call for AI Ethics,” which it hopes will lend meaning if not governance frameworks for the use of artificial intelligence. Making sure that “everyone can benefit” from AI by making its discoveries widely available will be important. This is perhaps where the church can be most effective.