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

  • A man wears a mask while walking past the New York Stock Exchange in New York City, March 17, 2020, photo by Lucas Jackson/Reuters

    Q&A

    The Social Distancing Economy: Q&A with RAND Experts

    Congress and the White House are weighing economic policies to help people acutely affected by the coronavirus pandemic. Here are insights from RAND experts on what might be effective in terms of fiscal policy, stimulus spending, and emergency relief to affected workers.

    Mar 18, 2020

  • A woman holding a baby looks out of a window from a shanty in Dharavi, Mumbai, India, October 15, 2009, photo by Arko Datta/Reuters

    Commentary

    Economic Development: A Recipe for Social Cohesion in India

    Given the staggering economic challenges that need attention, how might India refocus its attention away from sectarian divides to economic development? While there is no easy answer, focusing on inclusive growth and development might offer one potential route.

    Mar 16, 2020

  • News Release

    News Release

    Limiting Out-of-Network Payments to Hospitals Could Produce Cost Savings Similar to Single-Payer Options

    Placing limits on what hospitals can collect for out-of-network care could yield savings similar to more-sweeping proposals such as Medicare for All or setting global health spending caps. Because such an approach has the possibility to sharply cut hospital revenues, any cap would need to be set carefully as to not overly disrupt hospital operations.

    Mar 12, 2020

  • Doctor with digital tablet talking with a patient in a hospital bed, photo by monkeybusinessimages/Getty Images

    Report

    The Effects of Limiting Payments to Hospitals for Out-of-Network Care

    There is growing interest among U.S. policymakers to use out-of-network payment limits to curb surprise medical bills and as a tool to control rising health care costs. How might such limits affect negotiated in-network prices and total payments for hospital care?

    Mar 12, 2020

  • Flags of the United States, Russia, and China in the sky, photo by Pridannikov/Getty Images

    Report

    How Is the Global Competition of Ideas Changing?

    The United States is engaged in a new era of great-power competition in the realms of information, ideas, and ideology. An analysis of the policy and actions of China, Russia, and nonstate actors suggests what this competition might look like in the future and how U.S. policy should be adapted accordingly.

    Mar 12, 2020

  • A man wearing a mask walks through closed stores in Shanghai, China, as the country is hit by an outbreak of a new coronavirus, February 4, 2020, photo by Aly Song/Reuters

    Testimony

    How Does COVID-19 Affect Small and Medium-Sized Businesses?

    In China, as in most countries, small and medium-sized enterprises are the engines of the economy. An analysis of China's response to the COVID-19 outbreak and how it has affected China's economy and the global supply chain provides useful insights for the U.S. government and businesses.

    Mar 10, 2020

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin listens to a question as he attends an annual VTB Capital "Russia Calling!" Investment Forum in Moscow, Russia, November 20, 2019, photo by Alexander Zemlianichenko/Reuters

    Commentary

    Wake-Up Call for Russia

    Deteriorating living standards have put Russians on edge, and fears of economic stagnation have risen. Russia has the capacity to do better. So why is the economy stagnating?

    Mar 9, 2020

  • Blog

    Coronavirus Outbreak, Drones, the U.S. Power Grid: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on the intensifying coronavirus outbreak, cyber threats from drones, the vulnerabilities of the U.S. power grid, and more.

    Mar 6, 2020

  • Eggshell with UK and EU flag pattern, photo by Panorama Images/Getty Images

    Commentary

    The Costs of Brexit Uncertainty

    It may be tempting to think that Brexit is now done. But the UK's formal departure from the EU in late January was only the end of the beginning. And uncertainty is likely to affect the UK's economic performance moving forward.

    Mar 3, 2020

  • Infographic

    Infographic

    Estimating the Economic Benefits of Levant Integration: A Look at the Numbers

    This infographic helps users assess values of economic integration in the Levant in a variety of ways.

    Feb 24, 2020

  • Announcement

    Announcement

    New RAND Center to Analyze Options for U.S. Grand Strategy

    RAND is launching the Center for Analysis of U.S. Grand Strategy to advance the debate on American foreign policy by tackling key unresolved theoretical, empirical, and policy questions. The center will address analytical gaps so that policymakers may consider fully developed options for U.S. grand strategy.

    Feb 12, 2020

  • Zimbabwe's President Emmerson Mnangagwa is escorted by a guard of honour as he arrives for Independence Day celebrations in Harare, Zimbabwe, April 18, 2019, photo by Philimon Bulawayo/Reuters

    Commentary

    Little Has Changed in Post-Mugabe Zimbabwe

    After decades in power, President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe was toppled via a military coup in November 2017. His successor Emmerson Mnangagwa promised a break from Mugabe's authoritarian rule and economic mismanagement. After two years in power, to what extent has Mnangagwa delivered on his promises? In short, it's bleak.

    Feb 7, 2020

  • Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa addresses the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly at U.N. headquarters in New York City, New York, September 25, 2019, photo by Eduardo Munoz/Reuters

    Report

    Has Zimbabwe Changed Since Mugabe's Overthrow?

    After 37 years in power, President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe was toppled via a military coup in November 2017. His successor and former vice president, Emmerson Mnangagwa, promised a break from authoritarian rule and economic mismanagement. Has he delivered?

    Feb 6, 2020

  • Research Brief

    Research Brief

    Systemic Risk: It's Not Just in the Financial Sector

    After a decade of focus on financial firms, new analysis using an innovative approach and new dataset shows that firms in a diverse range of sectors, such as technology and telecommunications, pose a systemic risk to the economy at large.

    Feb 3, 2020

  • Blog

    Community Schools, Brexit, Coronavirus: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on the promise of community schools, the costs of uncertainty after Brexit, the coronavirus, and more.

    Jan 31, 2020

  • Cars on a Belt and Road Initiative highway, Almaty, Kazakhstan, June 16, 2017, photo by Kim Vermaat/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Belt and Road: Economic Gain Is Possible for All

    China's true motivations for its Belt and Road Initiative may still be unclear. But the West could consider the initiative's potential to deliver sustained economic, social, and environmental benefits for all, and find ways to support infrastructure improvements in the countries involved.

    Jan 30, 2020

  • Icebergs and ice in the Arctic Sea, photo by Explora_2005/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Today's Arctic Diplomacy Can't Handle Tomorrow's Problems

    The international structures that have helped address many Arctic problems through negotiation and cooperation are insufficient for the military and security challenges brought on by climate change. A new forum is needed to address military and security issues in the region.

    Jan 29, 2020

  • U.S. and China flags inside gears with a third gear with a question mark inside, photo by

    Commentary

    The Real U.S.-China Competition: Theories of Influence

    Strategic competition between the United States and China has come to dominate U.S. foreign policy debates. That competition is multifaceted, but it may turn on a basic question: Which country has a more sustainable concept of national influence?

    Jan 29, 2020

  • British and European Union flags in a cloudy sky, photo by themotioncloud/Getty Images

    Report

    Further Trade Uncertainty Due to Brexit Could Cost UK Billions

    The UK's official departure from the EU only ends the first phase of trade uncertainty related to Brexit. Costs to the UK economy are likely to continue during the UK–EU renegotiation period and will increase over time. By the end of 2020, UK GDP could decrease by $5.5 billion (£4.4bn).

    Jan 28, 2020

  • Blog

    Australia's Fires, Artificial Intelligence, Fentanyl: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on Australia's devastating fires, how artificial intelligence could manipulate the masses, the fentanyl crisis, and more.

    Jan 24, 2020