Infrastructure and Transportation

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RAND research addresses the challenges of developing, managing, and protecting energy, transportation, water, communications, and other critical infrastructure throughout the world.

  • The first C919 passenger jet made by the Commercial Aircraft Corp of China (Comac) during a news conference at the company's factory in Shanghai, November 2, 2015, photo by China Stringer Network/Reuters

    Report

    Chinese Investment in U.S. Aviation Is Not a Threat to Competitiveness

    Apr 10, 2017

    Since 2005, Chinese companies have acquired, merged, or established joint ventures with more than a dozen U.S. aviation companies. The investment has been limited to smaller manufacturers of technologies not relevant to commercial or military aircraft, likely due to effective U.S. export and foreign investment regulations.

  • A Nissan employee rides in a self-driving Nissan Leaf during a preview of autonomous vehicles in Sunnyvale, California, January 7, 2016, photo by Noah Berger/Reuters

    Testimony

    How to Realize Autonomous Vehicle Safety and Mobility Benefits

    May 18, 2017

    Self-driving vehicles could improve public safety. They could also improve mobility for older Americans, people with disabilities, and others. How can policymakers help ensure that these benefits are realized?

Explore Infrastructure and Transportation

  • Delayed passengers stand behind a police cordon after a shooting incident at Los Angeles airport (LAX)

    Commentary

    Airport Violence—Not a New Phenomenon

    Shootings at airports are nothing new, writes Brian Michael Jenkins. In fact, they have regularly occurred worldwide in recent years. The motives have included terrorism, crime, and mental illness.

    Nov 2, 2013

  • illustration of cars, trucks, buses, and helicopter traveling in a city

    Blog

    What Mobility Might Look Like in the U.S. in 2030

    Mobility — the ability to travel from one location to another — may look very different in the United States in the year 2030. Three key drivers differentiate possible scenarios: the price of oil, the development of environmental regulations, and the amount of highway revenues and expenditures.

    Oct 28, 2013

  • depiction of fast-moving traffic at night

    Report

    Scenarios Examine Future of Mobility in the United States

    What might one expect for the future of mobility in the U.S. in 2030? A six-step scenario development process resulted in two thought-provoking scenarios that address this question, and three key drivers differentiate the scenarios: the price of oil, the development of environmental regulation, and the amount of highway revenues and expenditures.

    Oct 24, 2013

  • The U.S.-flagged Maersk Alabama container ship docked at the Kenyan coastal sea port of Mombasa, April 12, 2009

    Commentary

    Somali Piracy All About Economics

    The average Somali lives on less than $2 a day. Even fishermen, who are comparatively well off by national standards, face difficulties making a living due to the chronic depletion of sea stocks from years of poaching and illegal dumping of toxic waste. Under such circumstances, the allure of piracy is clear.

    Oct 11, 2013

  • A Chinese contractor at the site of the Nairobi-Thika highway project

    Commentary

    The Strategy Behind China's Aid Expansion

    Between 2001 and 2011, China's pledged foreign aid was $671 billion. In all regions and countries, China's assistance focuses on the development of natural resources, principally energy-related (coal, oil, and gas). Both parties presumably benefit from China's aid but both are also exposed to added risks and hidden costs.

    Oct 9, 2013

  • Labourers work at a railway station construction site in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa

    Blog

    New RAND Study Examines Chinese Economic Assistance to Other Countries

    With the world's second largest economy, China has the capacity to engage in substantial programs of economic assistance and government-sponsored investments in 93 emerging-market countries.

    Sep 19, 2013

  • Report

    China's Foreign Aid and Government-Sponsored Investment Activities: Scale, Content, Destinations, and Implications

    With the world's second largest economy, China has the capacity to engage in substantial programs of economic assistance and government-sponsored investments. Researchers assessed the scale, trends, and composition of these programs in 93 emerging-market countries.

    Sep 18, 2013

  • Airmen from the 748th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron offload one of the two HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopters from a C-17 Globemaster III at Royal Air Force Mildenhall, United Kingdom, Sept. 19, 2013

    Report

    A Cost Analysis of the U.S. Air Force Overseas Posture

    While it does cost more to maintain force structures and installations overseas rather than in the United States, the total cost of doing so for the Air Force's current overseas posture is small relative to the Air Force's overall budget.

    Sep 16, 2013

  • boys exiting a school bus

    Commentary

    America's Great Yellow School Buses

    One of the things taken for granted in the United States is the vast network of school buses—about 26 million children ride 480,000 buses every day. But in other parts of the world, getting millions of children to and from the right school, on time, safely, and for a reasonable cost is a significant challenge.

    Sep 9, 2013

  • Labourers work at a railway station construction site in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa

    Dissertation

    Emerging Infrastructure Financing Mechanisms in Sub-Saharan Africa

    Explores the new flows and policy implications of private sector and emerging countries investments of emerging infrastructure in Sub-Saharan Africa.

    Sep 9, 2013

  • Solution

    Increasing Air Security with "Trusted Travelers"

    Long lines at airport security checkpoints are a sign of the post-9/11 world. Can aviation security be more efficient? Better yet, could a “trusted traveler” program not only reduce traveler burden but also increase security?

    Sep 1, 2013

  • Report

    Manchester Motorway Box: Post-Survey Research of Induced Traffic Effects: Model Estimation

    This report describes the development of discrete choice models to support analysis of the induced traffic effects resulting from the completion of the M60 Manchester Motorway Box in the UK.

    Jul 22, 2013

  • Report

    Identifying and Managing Air Force Sustainment Supply Chain Risks

    Examines supply chain risk management, including evolving commercial and Air Force practices.

    Jul 2, 2013

  • Report

    Key Trends That Will Shape Army Installations of Tomorrow

    Assesses how future trends external to Army installations may affect the Army's ability to provide quality installation services and infrastructure.

    Jun 6, 2013

  • close up of person using an ATM

    Commentary

    The Real Cyber Threat

    The fact is that the United States needs to gear up for the coming era of cyber threats — and start by ensuring its financial flank is not catastrophically compromised, writes Mark Sparkman.

    May 21, 2013

  • Traffic Jam Stopped Cars Pennsylvania Turnpike Exit 358 Bristol Levittown

    Commentary

    Paying for Infrastructure, a Taxing Issue

    If the “user pays” idea is worth saving, the United States needs a different calculation, writes Liisa Ecola. Some states are looking at mileage fees. With mileage fees, you pay based on the number of miles you drive, rather than the number of gallons of gas used.

    May 16, 2013

  • world map showing U.S. overseas bases

    Report

    The Strategic Benefits, Risks, and Costs of U.S. Military Presence Overseas

    While the DoD is under pressure to reduce costs, meaningful savings from overseas posture changes would require choosing from a small set of options, each presenting benefit trade-offs. U.S. military presence contributes to assurance of allies, deterrence, contingency responsiveness, and security cooperation.

    Apr 29, 2013

  • Research Brief

    U.S. Overseas Military Posture: Relative Costs and Strategic Benefits

    In an environment of fiscal constraints and shifting strategic needs, policymakers should carefully weigh the strategic capability effects, relative costs, and risks associated with potential changes to U.S. overseas military posture.

    Apr 29, 2013

  • A C-130 lands at the Malamute Drop Zone

    Report

    Maximizing Throughput at Soft Airfields

    Because soft airfields can support only a limited number of takeoffs and landings, it is important to understand how to maximize the cargo throughput at these soft fields. This report shows that there is an optimum landing weight that allows for maximum cargo delivery. This optimum landing weight is constant and independent of both aircraft ramp weight and the ability of the soil to resist compressive loads.

    Apr 23, 2013

  • A crew member from Station Boston conducts security zones in the Boston Harbor

    Commentary

    The Day After: How Will the Boston Marathon Bombing Change the Way America Fights Terrorism?

    The risk of overreaching in the name of homeland security is great. But the best and most likely outcome of this latest attack would be a measured security response built around Americans engaging anew in their own security, writes Brian Michael Jenkins.

    Apr 19, 2013