Economics

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Economics is a discipline concerned with the consumption, production, and transfer of wealth by and among individuals (microeconomics) and communities or nations (macroeconomics); subspecialties range from economic development and planning to health economics and international economic relations. RAND's many economists contribute to multidisciplinary research projects by exploring the intersections where economics informs social, military, and governmental policy decisions.

  • Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, U.S. President Donald Trump, and UAE Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed sign the Abraham Accords in Washington, September 15, 2020, photo by Tom Brenner/Reuters

    Report

    The Abraham Accords Could Have Wide-Reaching Economic Benefits

    Mar 18, 2021

    The Abraham Accords between Israel and Muslim nations represent a possible new chapter in the region's development—away from conflict and toward a shared vision of economic prosperity. Israel's partners could gain 150,000 new jobs. And that could grow to 4 million new jobs over a decade if other nations join.

  • Game pieces atop stacks of coins of various heights, depicting income inequity, photo by Andrii Zastrozhnov/Getty Images

    Research Brief

    A New Approach to Measuring Income Inequality

    Apr 30, 2021

    A new method for measuring income inequality reveals that, from 1975 to 2018, the only group for which actual income gains exceeded U.S. GDP growth was the group near the 99th percentile of income distribution.

Explore Economics

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping meet on the sidelines of the G20 leaders summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina, December 1, 2018, photo by Sputnik/Mikhail Klimentyev/Kremlin via Reuters

    Commentary

    A Warming Trend in China–Russia Relations

    The China–Russia relationship is indeed growing across military, economic, and political dimensions. But it is still more anchored in shared grievances than in common visions. Both countries contest U.S. interests, but in different ways. Washington should treat them as separate strategic challenges.

    Apr 18, 2019

  • Children walk as they hold stacks of bread at al-Hol displacement camp in Hasaka governorate, Syria, April 2, 2019, photo by Ali Hashisho/Reuters

    Commentary

    When Are Economic Sanctions Worthwhile?

    For American policymakers, economic sanctions are too often the soft choice between doing nothing and taking effective but risky or expensive action. Yet, before they inflict years, perhaps decades of impoverishment and worse on entire populations, they should ask if their efforts are likely to succeed and are worth punishing an entire people to do so.

    Apr 15, 2019

  • Men work on a damaged building in the northwestern province of Idlib, Syria, December 27, 2014, photo by Mahmoud Hebbo/Reuters

    Commentary

    The Syrian Civil War Is Coming to an End

    Coalition forces have driven ISIS from its final patch of territory in Syria. But the bigger challenge will be ending the ongoing civil war and rebuilding Syria to bring home millions of refugees and internally displaced people. This means creating a state that can provide safety, security, and opportunity that forestalls further rebellion and devastation.

    Apr 8, 2019

  • A medical bill showing balance due, photo by DNY59/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Addressing Surprise Medical Bills Without Raising the Cost of Health Care

    Patients who try to stay within their insurers' networks can be hit with surprise bills when they unknowingly receive care from out-of-network physicians. How much should a physician be paid for providing a service that is critical but rendered without the patient's ready ability to choose an in-network provider?

    Apr 1, 2019

  • Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May speaks in Parliament ahead of a Brexit vote, in London, Britain, March 13, 2019, photo by UK Parliament/Jessica Taylor/Handout via Reuters

    Commentary

    Life After Brexit Need Not Be a Disaster for the UK

    Leaving the European Union without a deal will be costly for Britain. But there are actions that could be taken now to help improve the economic prospects of a fully independent UK.

    Mar 18, 2019

  • News Release

    News Release

    How Two or More Trips to the Bathroom at Night Are Costing the U.S. Economy $44.4 Billion a Year

    Frequent visits to the bathroom at night could cost the U.S. economy $44.4 billion a year. Waking up more than twice a night due to nocturia, a health condition that affects the lower urinary tract, can have a detrimental effect on a person's wellbeing and productivity at work, which in turn has an impact on a country's GDP.

    Mar 12, 2019

  • Report

    Report

    How frequent night-time bathroom visits can negatively impact sleep, well-being and productivity: Examining the associations between nocturia, well-being and economic outcomes in a working-age population

    Nocturia, a urinary tract condition causing numerous night-time bathroom visits, can have negative impacts on sleep, wellbeing and productivity. Our results show a set of associations between nocturia and a range of conditions, outcomes and factors.

    Mar 11, 2019

  • A man visits the Huawei Cyber Security Transparency Centre in Brussels, Belgium, March 5, 2019, photo by Yves Herman/Reuters

    Commentary

    Public Evidence of Huawei as a Cyber Threat May Be Elusive, but Restrictions Could Still Be Warranted

    Although a “smoking gun” of Huawei involvement in government-directed espionage remains elusive, the United States has compelling security and economic reasons to consider limiting the involvement of Chinese telecommunications companies in its domestic networks.

    Mar 7, 2019

  • Journal Article

    Journal Article

    Commentary: Applying the Community Partners in Care Approach to the Opioid Crisis

    Consideration of how the CPIC approach of comparing coalition and individual technical assistance interventions to implement behavioral health treatments across sectors might be adapted to address the opioid epidemic.

    Mar 7, 2019

  • Founder of the Baring Vostok private equity group Michael Calvey, who was detained on suspicion of fraud, sits inside a defendants' cage as he attends a court hearing in Moscow, Russia, February 15, 2019, photo by Tatyana Makeyeva/Reuters

    Commentary

    Investing in Russia's Future

    Russia's economic problems can be traced to sanctions, lack of investment and lack of reform. The Kremlin has the power to address these problems. Reforms could unlock economic potential, and enable Russians to improve their living standards.

    Mar 1, 2019

  • Programmers looking at a digital tablet, photo by Hoxton/Tom Merton/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Who Should Fund U.S. Research and Development?

    The United States is in a global technology competition with important economic and national security implications. Government leadership and funding for shaping national research and development priorities will be essential.

    Feb 22, 2019

  • Blog

    Syrian Workers, Iranian Spies, Jihadi Brides: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on jobs for Syrian refugees, Iran's efforts to spy on the United States, the complicated cases of jihadi brides, and more.

    Feb 22, 2019

  • Stethoscope on top of UK 20 pound notes, photo by nito/Adobe Stock

    Commentary

    Health Funding—Finally Something We Can Agree On

    At a time when it has become common to think of the UK as a divided society, there are important questions of policy on which a great many people agree. How to fund the ever-growing needs of the NHS and social care is one such area of agreement.

    Feb 21, 2019

  • Journal Article

    Journal Article

    Public Acceptability of Health and Social Care Funding Options: Funding Options for the NHS and Social Care in the UK

    An assessment of how popular different funding approaches for the NHS and social care are among the general public, as part of a wider study on feasible options for the future funding of health and social care in the UK.

    Feb 20, 2019

  • A view of the cargo terminal of the Standard Gauge Railway line constructed by the China Road and Bridge Corporation and financed by the Chinese government, Nairobi, Kenya, May 31, 2017, photo by Thomas Mukoya/Reuters

    Commentary

    The Little-Known Security Gaps in China's Belt and Road Initiative

    China's Belt and Road Initiative focuses on developing infrastructure to connect Beijing to key hubs of economic activity throughout the world. But the more interests one has abroad, the more one has to protect.

    Feb 18, 2019

  • UN Special Envoy for Syria Geir O. Pedersen shakes hands with China's President Xi Jinping as King Harald of Norway looks on during a visit to China, October 16, 2018, photo by NTB Scanpix/Heiko Junge via Reuters

    Commentary

    The U.S. Withdrawal from Syria Is an Opportunity for China

    The U.S. withdrawal from Syria could allow Beijing to further assert its role as a key international partner in Syria and, by extension, further its interests in the Middle East. The extent of Sino-Syrian cooperation remains ambiguous but it has reportedly deepened, with China supplying intelligence personnel, strategic advisors, and special forces.

    Feb 15, 2019

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a business forum, Delovaya Rossiya, in Moscow, February 6, 2019, photo by Maxim Shemetov/Reuters

    Commentary

    Russia Chooses Paupers as Partners, with Questionable Benefit

    By leveraging the efficiencies of globalization and cultivating ties with prosperous partners, Russia could increase its economic potential and improve living standards for its people. And by engaging more positively with the world, it could gain influence in the forums that matter, such as the G20 and multilateral institutions.

    Feb 14, 2019

  • Georgian Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili and Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan review the honour guard at a welcoming ceremony in Tbilisi, Georgia, May 30, 2018

    Commentary

    Democratic Bright Spots in the South Caucasus

    Democratic bright spots are emerging in Armenia and Georgia despite their being wedged between less-than-democratic regional powers. Both countries seek to consolidate democratic gains and overcome poverty while managing daunting challenges from Russia and separatist conflicts. While pursuing these priorities, the countries deserve continued, strong Western support.

    Jan 23, 2019

  • U.S. President Donald Trump arrives to deliver remarks on the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) at a news conference in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, U.S., October 1, 2018

    Commentary

    The End of the End of History?

    The Trump administration has taken steps that represent a significant retreat from the norm-based, world order that the United States has championed since 1945. If this shift continues, what might be the impact?

    Jan 8, 2019

  • Two people shaking hands over a table with flags

    Commentary

    Economic Officers for the Future

    Economic officers must be, first of all, accomplished political officers. They should also have all the reporting, public speaking, and representational skills of any political or public diplomacy officer, coupled with a strong understanding of economic issues.

    Jan 7, 2019