The public’s perception, and priorities for transportation infrastructure is a critical component to long-term TAM planning and strategic TAM prioritization.
Public perception and priority data collection can begin through ad-hoc engagement, during individual public meetings, or with targeted surveys. In more advanced application, these techniques should be coordinated and refined into standardized, continuous feedback programs.
Valuable tools to public perception data collection include:
- Focus Groups where small, diverse groups of people are directly engaged to gather feedback.
- Surveys and Polling to gather broader samples of public opinion.
- Social Media Outreach offering two-way communication with the public regarding TAM priorities and values.
- Public Meetings to directly engage interested members of the community regarding the TAM program.
Agency Value and Perception
Internal agency perception and leadership values are additional data points needed to plan asset management capital programs. These requirements can originate from historical/legacy organizational structures as well as from political influences affecting executive leadership.
Decision makers should be targeted using a structured approach. Some example tools and approaches are:
- Delphi Technique which provides a structured, interactive approach to build consensus among a panel of experts.
- Nominal Group Technique which offers a group process for problem solving and decision-making, useful in groups of ranging sizes, but where all opinions should be considered.
- Decision Trees to map observations and conclusions about
Insights and Value Criteria
Modern decision science and data analytics programs require more than inventories and conditions to provide long-term value. The information obtained from public and agency perception surveys provide required context to investment decisions.
The following terms are used within this Section.
Quantitative techniques used to inform decision-making by identifying optimal choices based on available information. Decision science seeks to make plain the scientific issues and value judgments underlying these decisions, and to identify tradeoffs that might accompany any particular action or inaction.
DOT’s can utilize their customer service centers to tie feedback directly into work orders and maintenance functions. Many public interactions take place on Twitter/Facebook or other Social Media outlets. Agencies can introduce ways to connect feedback and maintenance issues into the maintenance and feedback data collection systems.
Some agencies may decide to take their capital improvement plan and budget on-the-road. Targeting a series of town hall style public outreach sessions and/or focus groups sessions is an effective means of obtaining a regionally varied input into a transportation asset management capital program.