Racial Equity


RAND research has addressed racial equity from several angles. Studies have explored such topics as disparities in the U.S. criminal justice system, unequal economic opportunities and barriers to employment for people of color, the achievement gap between minority and nonminority students, and how differences in access to quality health care can affect individual and community health and well-being.

  • Essay

    What Would It Take to Close America's Black-White Wealth Gap?

    White Americans hold ten times more total wealth than Black Americans, a disparity that has worsened in recent decades. RAND researchers modeled wealth across millions of households and tested several funding scenarios to see which could most effectively close the gap.

    May 9, 2023

  • Commentary

    Reducing Racial Disparities in VA Disability Compensation Decisions

    Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Denis McDonough recently announced formation of an equity team to examine and address racial differences in disability compensation grant rates. This is encouraging progress, particularly after years of reluctance on the part of the department to acknowledge there might be a problem.

    Mar 13, 2023

Explore Racial Equity

  • Jason Matheny, president and CEO of the RAND Corporation, photo by Diane Baldwin/RAND Corporation, image by Kekeli Sumah/RAND Corporation


    Ten Things That Inspired Me in 2022

    It would be impossible to capture all the important work that RAND does in a year. But RAND president and CEO Jason Matheny has compiled ten times he was inspired by RAND's efforts to bring insight to some of the biggest policy stories of 2022.

    Dec 15, 2022

  • RAND Weekly Recap


    The Racial Wealth Gap, the Effects of Long COVID, Teacher Diversity: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on understanding the racial wealth gap, why long COVID may threaten the U.S. economy, what prevents people of color from becoming and staying teachers, and more.

    Dec 9, 2022

  • Black couple holding sold sign sitting on porch of a house, photo by valentinrussanov/Getty Images


    To Help African Americans Gain Generational Wealth, Look to the Housing Market

    African American families have significantly less wealth than White families, even after reaching the middle class. Home ownership is, for the vast majority of Americans, the primary vehicle for accruing wealth, and passing it down through generations. This is a crucial time for policymakers to consider policies that focus on improving home ownership rates for African Americans.

    Dec 7, 2022

  • Illustrations of a black woman and a tree representing wealth, illustration by Pete Soriano, from Atlas Illustrations and dar/Adobe Stock


    Accounting for Black-White Wealth Differences

    Wealth accumulation is not solely determined by a person's choices and ability. Many factors affect individual wealth, including parental income, credit, and systemic discrimination. These factors have a cumulative effect and can lead to persistent disparities over generations.

    Dec 7, 2022

  • Illustrations of a black man and a tree representing wealth, illustration by Pete Soriano, from Atlas Illustrations and dar/Adobe Stock


    Overcoming Compound Racial Inequity

    Differences in Black and white Americans' economic status show how the harms of the past—slavery, segregation, discrimination—live on in the present. Could wealth allocations help to close the racial wealth gap?

    Dec 7, 2022

  • Illustrations of a black woman and a tree representing wealth, illustration by Pete Soriano, from Atlas Illustrations and dar/Adobe Stock


    Examining the Loss of Wealth and Downward Mobility of African Americans

    Black children who grow up in middle-class households are less likely than white children who grow up in middle-class households to replicate their parents' socioeconomic status. What key factors contribute to this disparity?

    Dec 7, 2022

  • A man's profile in front of an abstract image of branches and hundred dollar bills, illustration by Kekeli Sumah/RAND Corporation, from Andre Hunter/Unsplash and Pete Soriano/RAND Corporation, from Atlas Illustrations/Adobe Stock and dar/Adobe Stock


    Investigating the U.S. Racial Wealth Gap

    The gap in wealth between Black and white Americans is a product of historical realities that continue to shape economic outcomes. Policy interventions to address current wealth disparities must understand the long-standing inequities that contributed to them.

    Dec 6, 2022

  • Black woman teacher in a classroom, photo by NappyStock/Pexels


    Keeping Teachers of Color in the Classroom Will Take More Than a Pay Raise

    All students—but particularly Black and Latinx students—benefit academically and socially from having teachers who are people of color. Policymakers and education leaders can help these teachers stay in the profession by making teaching more financially sustainable and fostering collegial relationships within school communities.

    Dec 1, 2022

  • Journal Article

    Journal Article

    The Equity-First Vaccination Initiative's Challenges And Successes

    RAND collected, analyzed, and co-interpreted with other Equity-First Vaccination Initiative (EVI) partners both quantitative and qualitative data to promote equity in the COVID-19 response through vaccination.

    Nov 17, 2022

  • Journal Article

    Journal Article

    Use Of And Willingness To Use Video Telehealth Through The COVID-19 Pandemic

    We examined use of and willingness to use video telehealth during the COVID-19 pandemic in a longitudinally followed cohort.

    Nov 16, 2022

  • RAND Weekly Recap


    Supporting America's Veterans: RAND Weekly Recap

    This Veterans Day edition of the weekly recap focuses on helping veterans succeed in civilian jobs, a bakery that doubles as a business school for members of the military community, Black Americans’ military service, and more.

    Nov 11, 2022

  • News Release

    News Release

    Black Veterans Generally Have a Better Quality of Life Than Black Non-Veterans, but Still Struggle Compared to White ...

    Military service is associated with more-positive life outcomes and better economic prospects for Black Americans, despite facing greater health risks than their civilian counterparts.

    Nov 9, 2022

  • Col. Anthony L. Wilson congratulates Troopers after their successful completion of a spur ride, November 22, 2021, photo by SFC Gary Cooper/U.S. Army


    Black Veterans Generally Have a Better Quality of Life Than Black Non-Veterans

    Black veterans tend to have higher incomes and higher rates of home ownership than Black Americans who are not veterans. But the economic picture is less positive when compared with White Americans. Also, Black veterans experience more health concerns than Black or White civilians.

    Nov 9, 2022

  • A health care worker prepares a COVID-19 booster shot at a McDonald's in Chicago, Illinois, December 21, 2021, photo by Jim Vondruska/Reuters


    The Equity-First Vaccination Initiative's Challenges and Successes

    The Equity-First Vaccination Initiative invested $21 million in community-based organizations to reduce racial disparities in vaccination rollout and support strengthening public health systems in the United States over the longer term. The initiative demonstrated a path forward for funders to center equity in their approach to grantmaking.

    Nov 3, 2022

  • Periodical


    RAND Review: November-December 2022

    Features explore an innovative fellowship for military veterans, spouses, and caregivers; how veterans fare in the civilian labor market after leaving the military; and the impact of racism on patient safety in health care settings.

    Oct 31, 2022

  • RAND Weekly Recap


    Racism and Patient Safety, Abortion After Dobbs, Homelessness: RAND Weekly Recap

    This week, we discuss racism and patient safety, abortion in America after the Dobbs ruling, how to address homelessness in Los Angeles, and more.

    Oct 28, 2022

  • Members from historic African-American churches in the Tampa Bay Area wait in line to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at the Greater Bethel Missionary Baptist Church in Tampa, Florida, February 14, 2021, photo by Octavio Jones/Reuters


    The Impact of Racism on Patient Safety

    Minoritized patients are at high risk of experiencing what the medical field calls “patient safety events.” But the way the U.S. health care system tracks patient safety too often makes their experiences invisible. Better reporting would allow hospitals and other providers to identify disparities in care, and to address them.

    Oct 26, 2022

  • Silhouette of a police officer in blue over silhouettes of various people in browns and tans, photo by wildpixel/Getty Images

    News Release

    Second Annual RAND-AUC Consortium Policy Hackathon to Focus on Justice Reinvestment

    Undergraduate students from four Atlanta University Center (AUC) Consortium schools will collaborate with Pardee RAND doctoral students to identify potential justice reinvestment policy options during a virtual hackathon offered by the nonprofit, nonpartisan RAND Corporation, Pardee RAND Graduate School, and the AUC.

    Oct 26, 2022

  • RAND Weekly Recap


    Legalizing Cannabis, the Russian Nuclear Threat, Digital Offshoring: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on cannabis legalization, the Russian nuclear threat, the effects of digital offshoring, and more.

    Oct 14, 2022

  • A worker waters marijuana plants for the adult recreational market nside a greenhouse at Hepworth Farms in Milton, New York, July 15, 2022, photo by Shannon Stapleton/Reuters


    What's Next After Biden's Announcement on Cannabis and Racial Equity?

    Cannabis legalization isn't just a yes-or-no choice. There are many ways for state and federal policymakers to shape the market and tax it. With deliberations in Washington, D.C., beginning and more states set to vote on the issue in November, now is the time for lawmakers to take stock of how potential changes will or won't help communities of color.

    Oct 11, 2022