public investment made in their development is allowed to fulfill its promise. These products all involve computer hardware or software and potentially large amounts of data (especially the safety database). Stable, predictable funding is required so they can be updated and maintained—for example, through periodic hardware or software upgrades that are too expensive to be sustained by individual projects. FHWA and NHTSA should perform a thorough study of the most effective means of providing long-term administrative and technical support for these products. The study should include investigation of various approaches, such as centralization versus decentralization; collocation with existing programs versus establishment of new entities; and use of the AASHTOWare, online hosted models, and cloud servers.
Recommendation 4: A formal stakeholder advisory structure should be established to provide strategic guidance on program goals, priorities, and budget allocations, as well as technical advice. At a minimum, this advisory structure should include an executive-level oversight committee for the entire SHRP 2 implementation program and a second oversight committee focused exclusively on administration of the safety database.
Membership of the executive-level SHRP 2 implementation oversight committee should include the principal users of SHRP 2 products—state DOTs, local transportation agencies, metropolitan planning organizations, and appropriate private-sector and academic representatives—as well as experts on research implementation, IT, and knowledge management. The committee should be small enough to engage in efficient and effective decision making while including sufficiently broad stakeholder representation. The committee should meet at least twice a year. Its charge should include setting strategic priorities for the implementation program, reviewing and concurring with annual and multiyear program plans and budgets, monitoring progress on SHRP 2 implementation, and documenting results and lessons learned on which to base recommendations for future implementation efforts. In short, the SHRP 2 implementation oversight committee should be responsible for ensuring accountability in the SHRP 2 implementation program. The committee should report to Congress and the U.S. Department of Transportation annually.