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.

  • Apartment buildings under construction in Carlsbad, California, May 24, 2017, photo by Mike Blake/Reuters

    Commentary

    California Needs 1.2 Million New Homes. How Will It Get There?

    May 13, 2022

    Voluntary incentives foster increased production of affordable housing, while mandates alone increase the cost of producing housing, dampening both market-rate and affordable housing production. It is well past time to acknowledge the evidence and focus on the adoption of voluntary programs that incentivize the rapid creation of dense, infill housing available at both affordable and market rents.

  • An older man boarding a bus via the wheelchair access ramp, photo by monkeybusinessimages/Getty Images

    Report

    Transportation Equity for Older Adults

    Jun 3, 2022

    As individual mobility challenges increase and driving ability declines, travel for older adults can be inconvenient, costly, slow, uncomfortable, burdensome, or even impossible. A new framework can help communities understand older adults' transportation needs and whether they are being met.

Explore Infrastructure and Transportation

  • Car driving autonomously with LIDAR sensor

    Commentary

    The New AV Challenge: Creating a Universal Safety Framework

    Autonomous vehicle developers are pursuing different safety strategies and technologies, making different claims, in different ways, about their systems. A universal framework could provide a more consistent and transparent view of progress in AV safety within and across the industry, better informing the public and policymakers.

    Nov 2, 2018

  • People cycling and jogging in Chicago by Michigan lake.

    Content

    Community Health and Environmental Policy

    The Community Health and Environmental Policy program focuses on such topics as infrastructure, science and technology, community design, community health promotion, migration and population dynamics, transportation, energy, and climate and the environment.

    Nov 1, 2018

  • The Security Operation Centre for Telstra, Australia's biggest telecoms firm, which is used to monitor, detect and respond to security incidents, including cyber attacks, in Sydney, Australia, August 24, 2017

    Commentary

    Financial Frameworks for Cybersecurity Are Failing

    Cybersecurity has become a team sport. But all participants on the field are playing without clear rules, without a team approach, and without knowing when to pass the ball or to whom.

    Oct 25, 2018

  • Processor pins of a microchip

    Commentary

    Examining the Weak Spots in Tech's Supply Chain Armor

    When an attack on the supply chain occurs, manufacturers and purchasers should be better positioned to respond and recover. Even the simplest devices can rely on parts from multiple suppliers, which may have their own suppliers and so on. But every supplier, no matter how small, represents a potential weak link in the chain.

    Oct 16, 2018

  • Participants speak during a coffee break at Africa Endeavor 2018 in Santa Maria, Sal, Cabo Verde

    Commentary

    Partner Capacity-Building's Next Phase—Embracing Civil Works?

    The way ahead for civil works capacity-building is not without its challenges. But in places that are plagued by extremist violence and irregular warfare, fostering civil society's trust and confidence isn't just an added benefit. It could instead be a targeted outcome.

    Oct 16, 2018

  • Malaysian and Vietnamese fishing boats are destroyed for illegal fishing by the Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, police and navy, in Batam, Riau Islands, Indonesia, April 5, 2016

    Commentary

    Assessing Recent Developments in Indonesian Maritime Security

    Despite a daunting set of maritime challenges, Indonesia has placed renewed emphasis on maritime security governance. While the programs in place may take decades to bear fruit, Indonesia is on the path to securing the waterways and infrastructure so key to its overall economic development.

    Oct 12, 2018

  • Hacker on a laptop

    Commentary

    Have a Victim Response Plan for Data Breaches

    In a large data breach, there could be a real risk to victims' financial or personal security. Though responsible organizations should do everything in their power to ensure data is protected in the first place, they also should prepare a plan to ensure prompt victim response.

    Oct 2, 2018

  • Senior couple in a car

    Commentary

    How AVs Could Provide Independence for Older Drivers

    Giving up driving has been linked to depression and isolation in older adults, as well as early entry into nursing home facilities. Autonomous vehicles could help improve the well-being of older adults by allowing them to maintain independence while still giving up their car keys.

    Sep 21, 2018

  • Bird scooters outside a restaurant in Santa Monica, California, July 23, 2018

    Commentary

    A Better Way to Think About Scooters

    Unleashed in Santa Monica, California, last September, Bird and its competitors are now in 30 American cities and counting. Cities are responding to the scooter takeover with new regulations and increased law enforcement. But if officials rely only on 20th-century tools to integrate these 21st-century scooters into their cities, they will miss a big opportunity.

    Aug 28, 2018

  • A drone is used to survey high-voltage power lines of electric company Westnetz near Wilnsdorf, Germany, July 11, 2018

    Commentary

    Approaching a 'New Normal': What the Drone Attack in Venezuela Portends

    The attempt to assassinate Venezuelan President Maduro showed that drones are easy to use and difficult to defend against. Commercial off-the-shelf technology is easy to acquire. It is imperative that counterterrorism specialists begin planning a robust response to the threat.

    Aug 13, 2018

  • The Christophe de Margerie (R), an ice-class tanker fitted out to transport liquefied natural gas, is docked in Arctic port of Sabetta, Yamalo-Nenets district, Russia March 30, 2017

    Commentary

    Cooperation in the Arctic Likely to Continue—For Now

    Risks for serious tensions in the Arctic during the 2020s are likely to be overstated. Key players in the Arctic appear likely to continue working together to enhance the economic potential of the region and resolve conflicts before they emerge, as opportunities in the Arctic continue to grow.

    Jul 12, 2018

  • AutoNOMOS self-driving car drives during a presentation in Zurich, Switzerland, May 12, 2015

    Commentary

    What If Autonomous Vehicles Actually Make Us More Dependent on Cars?

    Cities across Europe are taking steps to become increasingly car free. Mayors, supported by their officials and planners, should start leading a debate now about how self-driving vehicles can best serve the needs of residents and visitors, and help deliver wider goals for their cities.

    Jun 19, 2018

  • A drone flies over the ocean at dawn

    Commentary

    New Technologies Could Help Small Groups Wreak Large-Scale Havoc

    Lone wolves or small groups could use emerging technologies, such as drones or AI, for nefarious purposes. The threat is even greater when these technologies are used along with disinformation spread over social media.

    Jun 18, 2018

  • The Federal Emergency Management Agency Headquarters in Washington, U.S., October 5, 2016

    Commentary

    FEMA's Transformation

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency's strategic plan shows several shifts in U.S. disaster relief policy. Redirecting longer-term recovery operations to state and local authorities would allow FEMA to concentrate its assets on the catastrophic disasters it is uniquely designed to handle.

    Jun 8, 2018

  • Ofo cycles lined up and ready for use at a railway station, Cambridge, UK, April 26, 2018

    Commentary

    Dockless Bikes Present Challenges, but Experience Shows They Can Work

    By encouraging more people to cycle, bike-sharing platforms could provide many potential benefits through reduced congestion, reduced air pollution, and health benefits. But there are also challenges, including pressures on existing cycling infrastructure and the potential for theft and vandalism.

    May 31, 2018

  • Migrants from Central America enter the United States Border and Customs facility, where they are expected to apply for asylum, in Tijuana, Mexico, May 4, 2018

    Commentary

    New Border Policy Could Have Unintended Consequences

    The Trump administration has announced significant policy changes to deter migrants from coming to America. These changes will likely have a significant impact on border operations and the federal court system. But it's less clear whether they will have the intended impact of reducing illegal immigration.

    May 21, 2018

  • Clockwise from top left: RAND's JOHNNIAC mainframe computer, the RAND Tablet, a mobile phone, and an autonomous vehicle

    Essay

    70 Years of Innovation at RAND

    Seventy years ago, a group of researchers established the independent RAND Corporation. From the first satellite design, to helping ensure GPS as a public good, to laying the groundwork for the internet, RAND has been making a difference ever since.

    May 9, 2018

  • Malware or virus inside microchip on electronic circuit

    Commentary

    What Do Meltdown, Spectre, and RyzenFall Mean for the Future of Cybersecurity?

    Unlike most previous cyber threats, a new wave of vulnerabilities attack a computer's hardware, rather than its software. What does this mean for cybersecurity as a whole?

    May 3, 2018

  • A graphic representing an accelerating future

    Article

    Can Humans Survive a Faster Future?

    Life is moving faster and faster. Just about everything—transportation, weapons, the flow of information—is accelerating. How will decisionmakers preserve our personal and national security in the face of hyperspeed?

    May 1, 2018

  • A mourner writes a message on a makeshift memorial a day after a van struck multiple people along a major intersection in north Toronto, Ontario, Canada, April 24, 2018

    Commentary

    The Continuing Plague of Vehicle Attacks: What Can Be Done?

    Attacks using vehicles like the one in Toronto this week are difficult to defend against, but that doesn't mean that law enforcement and local security forces can't make progress. There are four crucial elements to consider when thinking about mitigating the effects of ramming attacks.

    Apr 26, 2018