International Diplomacy

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Diplomacy, the practice of international relations, is an area in which RAND has significant research experience. Among RAND's many experts are former ambassadors whose research and commentary on both long-term efforts and current events shed light on how diplomatic ventures can be integral to national security goals and activities, including traditional military interventions, nuclear arms control, and nation-building efforts.

  • Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky visits Kherson, Ukraine, November 14, 2022, photo by Ukrainian Presidential Press Service/Reuters

    Commentary

    What's the Harm in Talking to Russia? A Lot, Actually

    Despite the way it is commonly portrayed, diplomacy is not intrinsically and always good, nor is it cost-free. In the Ukraine conflict, the problems with a push for diplomacy are especially apparent. The likely benefits of negotiations are minimal, and the prospective costs could be significant.

    Nov 22, 2022

  • U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Bridget Brink and Ukraine's Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova visit Borodianka, in the Kyiv Region, Ukraine, June 4, 2022, photo by Edgar Su/Reuters

    Commentary

    Do Americans Know Who Their Diplomats Are? Or What They Do?

    Americans have a limited understanding of how diplomats are selected and how diplomacy interacts with other elements of the U.S. national security establishment. Efforts to better inform and engage the American public about the work of diplomacy and who American diplomats are would lead to a greater understanding of the job and its people.

    Jun 20, 2022

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  • RAND Weekly Recap

    Blog

    Overturning Roe, a New Mental Health Hotline, Russia: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on how repealing Roe v. Wade could affect women in the military, whether America is prepared to launch a new emergency mental health hotline, Russia's war in Ukraine, and more.

    Jul 1, 2022

  • British and Chinese businessmen shake hands on the earth, Illustration by wenjin chen/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Setting the Direction for the UK's Research Relationship with China

    UK-China research has the potential to sustain the very forms of academic excellence that a more-isolationist approach sets out to protect, while also raising the possibility of bridge-building and tackling shared problems. For this to become a reality, knowledge and understanding of China in the United Kingdom must improve.

    Jun 30, 2022

  • NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg previews the Alliance’s upcoming Madrid Summit with POLITICO journalist Lili Bayer, June 22, 2022, photo courtesy of NATO

    News Release

    NATO Steers Towards New Focus on Human Security

    Ahead of this week's NATO Summit in Madrid, RAND Europe's Centre for Human Security brought together over forty experts from across military, government, academia, think tanks, and civil society for a seminar to explore the concept of Human Security and its applications at NATO now and in the future.

    Jun 24, 2022

  • Three technicians look at a report in a lab, photo by SolStock/Getty Images

    News Release

    Don't Cut Research Ties with China, Say UK Academics

    A new study from the not-for-profit research institute RAND Europe involving more than 80 UK-based academics from a range of disciplines and institutions finds a resounding appetite for continued collaboration with Chinese colleagues, despite acknowledged tension over security concerns.

    Jun 22, 2022

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin watches a military parade on Victory Day in Moscow, Russia, May 9, 2022, photo by Mikhail Metzel/Pool via

    Commentary

    Should Ukraine Settle with Russia?

    Should the United States humiliate Russia—and Russian President Vladimir Putin specifically—over the Russo-Ukrainian War? It could lead to escalation and new wars, but the United States and NATO may need to think twice before offering concessions.

    Jun 22, 2022

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin takes part in the opening ceremony of new healthcare facilities in several regions of Russia, via video link in Saint Petersburg, Russia, June 18, 2022, photo by Mikhail Metzel/Sputnik/Reuters

    Commentary

    Has the War in Ukraine Damaged Russia's Gray Zone Capabilities?

    Russia's actions are to blame for the damage done to its gray zone capabilities, but it's the West's choice to see whether this respite represents a short-term aberration or presents opportunities for some long-term fixes.

    Jun 22, 2022

  • Two Prominent Computer Engineers Working with Programming Software on Personal Computer. In the Background Scientifically Advanced Research Center.

    Research Brief

    Exploring the Opportunities and Challenges of Research Engagement with China

    An independent and evidence-based study into UK academics' research engagement with China explored how and why UK academics engage with China on joint research activities with the goal of better understanding how UK research organizations manage any resulting risks.

    Jun 21, 2022

  • Report

    Report

    Exploring Research Engagement with China: Opportunities and Challenges

    This study explores the opportunities and challenges of UK academics' research engagement with China.

    Jun 21, 2022

  • A crowd of people standing in a star formation over a background of red stripes of a U.S. flag, images by adimas and bennymarty/Adobe Stock

    Report

    How a Nation's Social Condition Relates to Its Global Standing

    Certain societal characteristics are associated with national competitive success, including national ambition and will, unified national identity, and shared opportunity. Where does the United States stand in those areas? And what trends are working to weaken traditional U.S. advantages?

    Jun 21, 2022

  • A Ukrainian service member inspects a destroyed Russian armored personnel carrier in the Zaporizhzhia region, Ukraine, April 30, 2022, photo by Ueslei Marcelino/Reuters

    Commentary

    What if Russia's Army Fails in Ukraine?

    Fighting in Ukraine will likely continue. But battlefield advantages could continue to ebb and flow, too. The West should prudently prepare for Ukrainian success as well as a less favorable outcome.

    Jun 20, 2022

  • RAND Weekly Recap

    Blog

    Teachers' Stress, Drug Dealing in San Francisco, Preventing Mass Shootings: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on stress among America's educators, what state governments can do to prevent targeted violence, stopping open-air drug dealing in San Francisco, and more.

    Jun 17, 2022

  • RAND Weekly Recap

    Blog

    RAND's New President, the U.S. Foreign Service, Transportation Equity: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on RAND's next president and CEO, Jason Matheny, insights into Americans' views on diplomacy and diplomats, solutions for transportation equity, and more.

    Jun 10, 2022

  • Secretary of State Antony Blinken hosts a reception in recognition of Eid, at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C., May 26, 2022, photo by Freddie Everett/U.S. State Department

    Report

    How Do Americans View Diplomacy and Diplomats?

    A survey asked Americans what they think about diplomacy, the U.S. Foreign Service, and other officials who represent the nation abroad. Impressions were generally favorable, but some lacked understanding of what diplomats do, how they are selected, and the role of diplomacy in national security.

    Jun 8, 2022

  • U.S. President Joe Biden holds a virtual meeting with India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss Russia's war with Ukraine from the White House in Washington D.C., April 11, 2022, photo by Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

    Commentary

    Modi's Multipolar Moment Has Arrived

    Russia's war in Ukraine has benefited India as great powers are competing more vigorously for New Delhi's affection, particularly the United States and China. India has also prevented its Russia policy from spoiling partnerships with key European and Indo-Pacific partners. These trends, if sustained, will contribute to India's rise to great-power status and in turn, shift the global system toward even greater multipolarity.

    Jun 6, 2022

  • RAND Weekly Recap

    Blog

    Gun Policy, Ukraine's Best Chance for Peace, Equity and Public Policy: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses what the scientific evidence says about gun laws, a potential pathway toward peace in Ukraine, helping incarcerated parents, and more.

    Jun 3, 2022

  • Russian President Vladimir Putin is seen on a screen partially obscured by decorations at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, June 4, 2021, photo by Evgenia Novozhenina/Reuters

    Commentary

    The Return of 'Don’t Poke the Bear'

    Some argue that, in order to avoid antagonizing Russia, the West should call for Ukraine to back down and move toward a negotiated peace. But this strategy comes with its own set of consequences.

    Jun 3, 2022

  • Multimedia

    The Growing Role of Europe in Asia: Connecting the Atlantic and the Indo-Pacific

    Key U.S. allies in Europe have been deepening defense cooperation with regional partners in the Indo-Pacific region. A November 2021 RAND Corporation event hosted experts to discuss the growing role of Europe in Asia.

    Jun 2, 2022

  • A Ukrainian service member walks in a trench near the front line in the Donetsk Region, Ukraine, May 29, 2022, photo by Serhii Nuzhnenko/Reuters

    Commentary

    Ukraine's Best Chance for Peace

    In late March, Ukrainian diplomats introduced an innovative framework for a deal that could provide a pathway out of the war. There are powerful obstacles to achieving an agreement based on the framework, but so far it is the most plausible pathway identified to a sustainable peace for Ukraine.

    Jun 1, 2022

  • RAND Weekly Recap

    Blog

    Gun Policy, China and Taiwan, Russian Propaganda: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on reducing America's unacceptably high rates of gun violence, what would happen if China “quarantines” Taiwan, and Russia's “firehose of falsehood.”

    May 27, 2022