RAND Center to Advance Racial Equity Policy

An illustration of people from diverse racial backgrounds. Image by Lyubov Ivanova / Getty Images

Illustration by Lyubov Ivanova / Getty Images

The RAND Center to Advance Racial Equity Policy uses inclusive and data-driven policy research to move towards policies and systems that create a more equitable playing field. Advancing racial equity means moving beyond focusing on disparities to developing inclusive and equitable solutions that improve society for all.

Led by inaugural director Rhianna C. Rogers, the center takes an innovative approach to highlighting equity issues—including working with a diverse group of collaborators—with the aim of driving meaningful policy development and change.

The center was established in 2020 with funding from donor contributions and RAND's own resources. The center emerged from an effort by RAND to take stock of where it stands on how policy analysis is designed, framed, executed and translated, and the role of factors related to diversity, equity and inclusion. The center’s blueprint was developed with the input of RAND staff, and the center is part of a larger commitment to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in the organization’s operations and external engagement.

Research Threads

The center's work is based in several emerging focus areas:

  • Digital equity
  • Media equity
  • Neurodiversity and equity
  • Dispelling inequities and distrust between communities of color
  • Socio-cultural gaming and equity
  • Deliberative conversations
  • Deep learning series
  • Healthy living and mental health
  • Women of color in leadership
  • Arts equity
Read more about the Center to Advance Racial Equity Policy
  • A historical map of Philadelphia showing the outlines of the 'redlined' neighborhoods determined by the Home Owners' Loan Corporation.

    Environmental Racism

    Mar 31, 2022

    Past housing policies—such as redlining—have an enduring legacy on urban neighborhoods today, and have contributed to which communities enjoy more trees, less traffic, and better air quality, and which face hazards such as pollution, toxic waste sites, and flooding risk.


Research and Commentary

We've highlighted a small sample of RAND research and commentary below that addresses the challenge of racial equity from a variety of angles, and across multiple research disciplines.

Health and Well-Being


  • Students hold signs inside the Kentucky Capitol Rotunda in opposition to bills Kentucky lawmakers say would eradicate critical race theory from state schools, January 12, 2022, photo by Alton Strupp/USA Today via Reuters


    Anti-Bias Education in U.S. Public Schools

    Feb 22, 2022

    Teaching students explicitly about issues of identity, diversity, equity, and bias can lead to positive outcomes. Nearly three in four K–12 teachers reported that they provide such anti-bias instruction, but more than half said that their school's or district's curriculum materials did not adequately address anti-bias topics.

Security and Public Safety

  • A woman says goodbye to her partner as she holds their 5-year-old daughter at San Quentin state prison in San Quentin, California, June 8, 2012, photo by Lucy Nicholson/Reuters


    Programs for Incarcerated Parents

    Feb 8, 2022

    About 2.7 million U.S. children have a parent in prison. This can strain the parent-child relationship and increase the risk for child delinquency, poor academic achievement, and social and emotional problems. What programs do prisons offer to support families? And are they responsive to needs based on gender and culture?

Economic Opportunity

  • Wooden human figures with different colors on a dark gray surface, photo by designer491/Getty Images


    Algorithms Teach Us Why Equity Is Hard

    Mar 28, 2022

    If all the shortcomings of humanity were stripped away, equity would still be an elusive goal for algorithms for reasons that have more to do with mathematical impossibilities than backward ideologies. But even if attaining equity is fundamentally difficult, seeking it is not futile.

RAND's Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion