Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
The RAND Corporation is an American think tank first formed to offer research and analysis to the U.S. military. The organization has since expanded to working with other governments and commercial organizations. RAND has around 1100 employees based at four sites: Santa Monica (California), Arlington (Virginia), Pittsburgh (Pennsylvania), and Leiden (The Netherlands). Some consider the corporation's name to be a contraction of the phrase "Research ANd Development". (Gen. Curtis LeMay quipped that RAND meant "Research And No Development".)
RAND was set up in 1945 by the USAAF as Project RAND, under contract to the Douglas Aircraft Company, and in 1945 they released the Preliminary Design of an Experimental World-Circling Spaceship. In May 1948, Project RAND was separated from Douglas and became an independent organization.
Achievements and Expertise
The achievements of RAND stem from its development of systems analysis. Important contributions are claimed in space systems and America's space program, in computing and in artificial intelligence. RAND researchers developed many of the principles that were used to build the Internet.
Current areas of expertise, including that of RAND's education-related division — the Institute on Education and Training — are: child policy, civil and criminal justice, education, environment and energy, health, international policy, labor markets, national security, population and regional studies , science and technology, social welfare, terrorism, and transportation.
RAND oversaw one of the largest and most important studies of health insurance. The RAND Health Insurance Experiment, funded by the then-U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare, established an insurance corporation to compare demand for health services with their cost to the patient.
According to the 1994 annual report "two-thirds of Rand's research involves national security issues."
RAND is also the home to the Frederick S. Pardee RAND Graduate School, one of the original graduate programs in public policy and the first to offer a Ph.D. The program is unique in that students work alongside RAND analysts on real-world problems. The campus is at RAND's Santa Monica headquarters.
Notable RAND participants
- Henry H. Arnold - General USAF - Founder
- Donald Wills Douglas, Sr. - President, Douglas Aircraft Company - Founder
- Arthur E. Raymond - Chief Engineer, Douglas Aircraft Company - Founder
- Paul Baran - One of the developers of Packet switching which was used in Arpanet and later networks like the Internet
- Barry Boehm
- Cecil Hastings (programmer, wrote software engineering classic, Approximations for Digital Computers Princeton 1955 )
- Allen Newell
- Paul O'Neill - chairman in the late 1990s
- Daniel Ellsberg, leaker of the Pentagon Papers
- John Von Neumann - mathematician
- John Forbes Nash - mathematician
- Herman Kahn - theorist on nuclear war
- Katsuaki L. Terasawa - economist
- Donald Rumsfeld - Chairman of RAND Corporation from 1981-1986 and current Secretary of Defense for the United States
- Condoleezza Rice - Former Trustee 1991-1997 and current Seceratary of State for the United States
- Francis Fukuyama - Academic, Author
- James Q. Wilson (board of directors)
- A Million Random Digits with 100,000 Normal Deviates (published by RAND)
- An article about RAND at SourceWatch
- Council for Aid to Education (a RAND Subsidiary)
- Frederick S. Pardee RAND Graduate School
- Paul Baran's research at RAND on packet switching
- RAND website
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