Democracy

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  • A crowd of people surrounding images representing the news, design by Alyson Youngblood/RAND

    Article

    What Americans Think of the News—and What That Means for Democracy

    Apr 28, 2020

    RAND researchers asked a nationally representative sample of adults about their news-consumption habits. The answers reveal clues about what it might take to address Truth Decay—the decline of facts in U.S. public life.

  • Supporters of the outgoing president, Donald Trump, climb a wall during a deadly mob assault on the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., January 6, 2021, January 6, 2021, photo by Jim Urquhart/Reuters

    Commentary

    The Battle of Capitol Hill

    Jan 11, 2021

    The deadly mob assault on the U.S. Capitol Building was a predictable possibility. Democracy held, but security failed, spectacularly. We need to be better prepared for future acts of political violence.

Explore Democracy

  • People line up to cast their ballots for the upcoming presidential election as early voting begins in Cincinnati, Ohio, October 6, 2020, photo by Megan Jelinger/Reuters

    Commentary

    Will There Be Domestic Terrorism During Election Season?

    The COVID-19 pandemic has roiled the elections. The United States is deeply divided and the political system is polarized. Under these fraught circumstances, even a minor event can have far-reaching repercussions. What are the prospects for domestic terrorism in the context of U.S. elections?

    Oct 7, 2020

  • Russian Interference in the 2020 U.S. Election (Crop)

    Multimedia

    Russian Interference in the 2020 U.S. Election

    RAND military sociologist Marek Posard describes several broad risks of foreign interference in American democracy and explains how Russia may use reflexive control theory to cause disruption in the 2020 U.S. Election.

    Oct 1, 2020

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin takes part in a video conference call with officials and public representatives of the region of Dagestan amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak at the Novo-Ogaryovo state residence outside Moscow, Russia May 18, 2020, photo by Alexei Nikolsky/Reuters

    Report

    How Russia Targets U.S. Elections

    In this campaign season, Russia might try to manipulate U.S. voters through social media as it did in 2016. New technologies have made these efforts easier. Russia's tactics aim to polarize Americans, create distrust, and paralyze the political process. What is the best defense against them?

    Oct 1, 2020

  • Election worker Gisela Alberg cleans a voting booth at Sonoma Elementary School during the primary election in Las Cruces, New Mexico, U.S., June 2, 2020, photo by Paul Ratje/Reuters

    Multimedia

    RAND Remote Series: Preparing for Elections During a Pandemic

    In this video conversation, RAND's Jennifer Kavanagh and Quentin Hodgson discuss the unique voting challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Sep 25, 2020

  • Members of parliament attend the first session of the newly elected parliament in Kutaisi, Georgia, November 18, 2016, photo by David Mdzinarishvili/Reuters

    Commentary

    Georgia: From COVID-19 to a Critical Test of Democracy

    Georgia has successfully dealt with the COVID-19 outbreak but now must meet the task of conducting free, fair, and transparent parliamentary elections on October 31 and dealing with the economic impacts of the pandemic.

    Sep 23, 2020

  • Report

    Report

    Securing U.S. Elections Against Cyber Threats: Considerations for Supply Chain Risk Management

    The supply chain for components of U.S. election systems and equipment is at the core of election security. The authors of this Perspective describe the supply chain–related risks to election cybersecurity and integrity and how they can be managed.

    Sep 22, 2020

  • China's President Xi Jinping looks on during the BRICS Summit in Johannesburg, South Africa, July 26, 2018, photo by Gulshan Khan/Pool/Reuters

    Testimony

    Continuity and Change in China's Foreign Policy

    China's hawkish and assertive foreign policy has experienced both continuity and change in recent years. What is the key criterion for evaluating the success of Beijing's foreign policy? And how do domestic pressures affect it?

    Sep 9, 2020

  • The U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., photo by lucky-photographer/Getty Images

    Blog

    Summer Reading List for Congress

    During the August recess Hill staff should have an opportunity to step back from the fast pace of votes and hearing preparation to examine priorities for the fall and beyond. This list of must-read research and commentary covers some policy issues they will likely be addressing after the break.

    Aug 18, 2020

  • Protestors gather in Minsk, Belarus, to demand the resignation of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko and the release of political prisoners, August 16, 2020, photo by Vasily Fedosenko/Reuters

    Commentary

    The West's Role in Belarus

    Belarus may be on the verge of political change. If allowed to help, how could the West support free and fair elections and the formation of a legitimate government?

    Aug 18, 2020

  • Blog

    The Postal Service, Election Security, Reducing Child Deaths: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on the role of the U.S. Postal Service, preparing for the presidential election, reducing child deaths in Nigeria, and more.

    Jun 26, 2020

  • Journal Article

    Journal Article

    Study on the Benefits and Drawbacks of Remote Voting: Final report

    Researchers examined the barriers to voting encountered by different groups of citizens and mapped the different types of remote voting solutions available in EU member states.

    Jun 25, 2020

  • Journal Article

    Journal Article

    Study on the Benefits and Drawbacks of Remote Voting: Executive summary

    Researchers examined the barriers to voting encountered by different groups of citizens and mapped the different types of remote voting solutions available in EU member states.

    Jun 25, 2020

  • Voters prepare to cast their ballot in the Democratic primary in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, June 2, 2020, photo by Rachel Wisniewski/Reuters

    Commentary

    Keep Voters Healthy. Keep Elections Secure. Can the U.S. Do Both?

    U.S. adversaries have stepped up cyberattacks and disinformation campaigns. The United States should expect these foes to take advantage of the logistical challenges of voting in a COVID-19 world to redouble their efforts against elections.

    Jun 22, 2020

  • Illustration of people talking, public discourse, truth decay

    Multimedia

    COVID-19 Briefing Series: A Crisis of Disinformation

    RAND's Jennifer Kavanagh and Todd Helmus discuss the effect of the pandemic on public trust in important sources of information and institutions that provide information.

    May 22, 2020

  • Blog

    A Proposed COVID-19 Cure, Economic Decline, North Korea: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on the unintended consequences of a proposed COVID-19 treatment, another wave of economic destruction, North Korea after Kim Jong Un, and more.

    May 1, 2020

  • President Faure Gnassingbe and Presidential candidate of UNIR (Union for the Republic) winner of the presidential election speaks in front of his supporters at his headquarters in Lome, Togo, February 24, 2020, photo by Luc Gnago/Reuters

    Commentary

    Family Matters: More of the Same in Togo

    Faure Gnassingbe was reelected in February to a fourth term as president of Togo. The result was no surprise. Due to the stacked system he and his father built, Faure is likely to rule until 2030 or beyond.

    Mar 6, 2020

  • RAND leaders and media experts speak at a “Truth Decay and the Media” panel on February 20, 2020 at RAND's Santa Monica headquarters.

    Multimedia

    How the Media Can Help Fight Truth Decay

    Truth Decay is the diminishing role of facts and analysis in American public life. As part of this phenomenon, Americans are losing faith in once-trusted sources of information, including the news. How might media organizations address this?

    Feb 20, 2020

  • Blog

    Civic Engagement and Health, the State of the Union, Better Sleep: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on the link between civic engagement and health, policy insights from the State of the Union address, what couples can do to improve their sleep, and more.

    Feb 7, 2020

  • People leaving a polling place, wearing I Voted stickers, photo by SDI Productions/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Civic Engagement and Keeping the Public Engaged in Public Health

    Civic engagement—activities like voting and volunteering—is essential for the health of democracy. A turn at the ballot box might also improve physical and mental health.

    Feb 4, 2020