Economic Development

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Economic development includes a host of issues—including energy supply; technology; and access to jobs, food, water, education, health care, and housing—that are fundamental to improving the economic status of communities and transforming impoverished nations. RAND takes a multidisciplinary approach to investigating opportunities for economic development, modeling future trends, and applying objective analysis to recommend policy solutions for global, national, and local economies.

  • Women work on a production line at a mobile phone factory in Assuit, Egypt, September 30, 2018, photo by Mohamed Abd El Ghany/Reuters

    Commentary

    Economic Recovery in Egypt Should Include Women

    May 11, 2020

    Despite tremendous strides in educational attainment, women's engagement in the labor force in Egypt remains limited. Will Egypt's post-pandemic recovery further exacerbate structural barriers and inequities? Or could the current economic crisis be an opportunity to develop new opportunities to employ women and foster conditions for a more inclusive and diversified labor force?

  • Residents carry boxes of free groceries distributed at a pop-up food pantry by the Massachusetts Army National Guard in Chelsea, Massachusetts, April 24, 2020, photo by Brian Snyder/Reuters

    Commentary

    The Second Wave of COVID Consequences

    Apr 24, 2020

    Economists closely watch measures of consumer confidence because they are highly predictive economic indicators. New consumer data reveals likely long-term and prolonged economic fallout.

Explore Economic Development

  • Street sign with Wall St. and Main St. signs, photo by BobHemphill/Getty Images

    Commentary

    A Tale of Two Americas

    While a confluence of crises have spotlighted a dangerous divide, inequality in the United States has been increasing for decades, and cannot be undone in a hurry. There is no substitute for firm policy commitment over many years to address disparities in the basic aspects of life—education, health, jobs, financial and business participation, and justice.

    Jul 9, 2020

  • A compilation of signs on doors of temporarily closed restaurants and shops in central Maastricht, Netherlands, March 16, 2020, photo by Francois Lenoir/Reuters

    Commentary

    Small Businesses Need the Right Kind of Help to Survive COVID-19

    Small and medium-sized companies are less equipped than large ones to weather the devastating effects of the pandemic. What could policymakers do to help these businesses get the help they need?

    Jun 26, 2020

  • The grill is nearly empty at dinner hour at Ben's Chili Bowl during the COVID-19 pandemic in Washington, D.C., April 30, 2020, photo by Jonathan Ernst/Reuters

    Commentary

    A Path to Recovery from COVID-19 for Small Businesses

    The COVID-19 pandemic has hammered small businesses around the United States. We spoke with 21 small business owners to learn more about the challenges they are facing and how they might best be helped.

    Jun 25, 2020

  • People stacking hands together in the park, photo by Rawpixel/Getty Images

    Commentary

    What Elinor Ostrom Teaches Us About Avoiding the 'Tragedy of the Commons' in Delivering the Public Interest in the Post COVID-19 World

    The public interest can be an elusive concept, especially when trying to distinguish between shared and individual interests, a problem brought into sharper focus as we try to find the right path to a post COVID-19 world. Governments are seeking to do the best for their societies with limited information. As more data is being acquired, how can public policy achieve common interest?

    Jun 22, 2020

  • Chinese President Xi Jinping raises his glass and proposes a toast at the end of his speech during the welcome banquet, after the welcome ceremony of leaders attending the Belt and Road Forum at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, April 26, 2019, photo by Nicolas Asfour/Reuters

    Journal Article

    What China Wants in South Asia

    This brief outlines the issues facing different South Asian countries with respect to their relationships with China.

    Jun 12, 2020

  • A man speaks with a library worker after receiving an unemployment form in Miami Beach, Florida, April 8, 2020, photo by Marco Bello/Reuters

    Commentary

    38 Million Have Applied for Unemployment. But How Many Have Received Benefits?

    Unemployment Insurance may need substantial reform to its application process, but it has weathered the COVID-19 pandemic unemployment disaster. Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, the new program intended for workers who are not part of the employer tax base, has not.

    Jun 1, 2020

  • As phase one of reopening begins in Northern Virginia, a waitress with a face mask serves diners at a restaurant in Alexandria, Virginia, May 29, 2020, photo by Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

    Commentary

    The Wealth Gap Widens

    Whether history considers the current downturn a recession or a depression, it will reinforce the growing inequality in the United States. Navigating this crisis without substantially increasing inequality would require an unwavering commitment to support displaced workers and small-business owners.

    Jun 1, 2020

  • Polygonal image of COVID-19 virus superimposed on a digital world map, photo by Andrii Pokliatskyi/Getty Images

    Blog

    Global Challenges to Maintaining a Healthy Workforce During a Pandemic: Views from RAND Experts

    As nations across the globe remain in lockdown to curb the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, questions about the future of employment and workforce productivity emerge. During a recent webinar, RAND experts discussed how to get people back to work and improve productivity post COVID-19.

    May 15, 2020

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks to Finnish President Sauli Niinisto during their meeting at the Bocharov Ruchei state residence in the Black Sea resort of Sochi, Russia, August 22, 2018, photo by Pavel Golovkin/Pool/Reuters

    Commentary

    Why Russia Struggles to Feed Its Great-Power Addiction

    Russia has become less cooperative and pursued more autarky in recent years. If Moscow continues on a path of resisting globalization, it could be left behind.

    May 11, 2020

  • ODF 2017, NSF, USAP, McMurdo Station, Antarctica, Cargo Operations

    Report

    Global Economic Trends and the Future of Warfare: The Changing Global Environment and Its Implications for the U.S. Air Force

    This volume of the Future of Warfare series examines economic trends that could affect U.S. national security, including pressure on the global trading system, the rise of China, searches for new resources, and the decreasing power of U.S. sanctions.

    May 11, 2020

  • Protesters calling for rent payments to be canceled amid the outbreak of COVID-19, in Washington, D.C., April 25, 2020, photo by Erin Scott/Reuters

    Commentary

    Coronavirus and the Looming Crisis in Rental Housing

    Housing security is vital to individual and collective well-being. It's also a key component in the nation's economic performance. The looming coronavirus eviction crisis suggests the need to address the systemic problem of housing affordability and security now.

    Apr 30, 2020

  • The U.S. Navy hospital ship Comfort passes the Statue of Liberty as it enters New York Harbor during the COVID-19 outbreak, March 30, 2020, photo by Mike Segar/Reuters

    Commentary

    After COVID-19: America Needs to Reengage with the World, Not Retreat

    The COVID-19 pandemic should lead to a further strengthening of the national and international response capacity. The alternative of erecting barriers and closing America off to the world would leave it more vulnerable to the next big shock.

    Apr 1, 2020

  • An empty market after a curfew was imposed to halt the spread of COVID-19 in the holy city of Najaf, Iraq, March 18, 2020

    Commentary

    Economic Consequences of COVID-19 in the Middle East: Implications for U.S. National Security

    The global COVID-19 pandemic will have a dramatic effect on economies across the globe. But the Middle East may be particularly affected, given the simultaneous fall in oil prices. The economic consequences of this pandemic are also likely to affect U.S. interests in the region.

    Apr 1, 2020

  • People walk around an almost empty Grand Central Terminal as the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak continues in New York City, U.S., March 29, 2020, photo by Eduardo Munoz/Reuters

    Commentary

    On the Horns of the COVID-19 Dilemma

    COVID-19 poses two dire threats to the United States: the potential deaths of many thousands of Americans, and the devastation of the $22 trillion annual economy. Protecting the health of as many people as possible by shutting down ordinary life seems completely justifiable, but that necessarily inflicts damage to the economy. This is truly a dilemma.

    Mar 30, 2020

  • Blog

    COVID-19 and the Economy, America's Blood Supply, 10 Years of the ACA: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on COVID-19 and the economy, strengthening the U.S. blood supply, 10 years of the Affordable Care Act, and more.

    Mar 27, 2020

  • U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer meet with Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin to wrap up work on coronavirus economic aid legislation, Washington, D.C., March 20, 2020, photo by Mary F. Calvert/Reuters

    Q&A

    The Economic Wallop of COVID-19: Q&A with RAND Experts

    As Washington continues to weigh economic responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, here are insights from RAND experts on how aid money might be best allocated, how this crisis compares to the 2008 recession, what business communities can do right now, and more.

    Mar 26, 2020

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with public members in Sevastopol, Crimea March 18, 2020, photo by Alexei Druzhinin/Reuters

    Commentary

    Russia's Ties with the West Rhyme

    With Vladimir Putin seeking constitutional changes that could allow him to stay as president until the 2030s, Russia's strained relations with the West may persist. But if it chooses, Russia can chart a more dynamic future with closer Western ties.

    Mar 23, 2020

  • Blog

    Experts Discuss COVID-19: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on COVID-19, how the United States is responding to the coronavirus outbreak, the spread of misinformation during this time, and more.

    Mar 20, 2020