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Volume II: Guide for Performance Measure Identification and Target Setting 2.0 Using Performance Measures for Asset Management 2.1 Definitions The Guide defines asset management as "a strategic approach to managing transportation infra- structure" (1 p. G-1). Although transportation officials manage a wide range of assets, the Guide focuses on the physical infrastructure of the transportation system, such as roads, bridges, and appurtenances. At the heart of asset management is a performance-based approach to making decisions on how best to allocate and use resources for managing this infrastructure. The Guide defines resources as inputs into the infrastructure management process (e.g., human resources, financial capacity, corporate information, equipment, and materials). Performance measurement is a way of monitoring progress toward a result or goal. It is also a process of gathering information to make well-informed decisions. Transportation agencies have used performance measures for many years to help track and forecast the impacts of transportation investments, monitor the condition of highway features, and gauge the quality of its services. Gen- eral guidance on transportation performance measures and performance-monitoring concepts is available in a wide variety of sources. (Highlights from several of these documents are presented in Section 3.0 of Volume I.) NCHRP Project 20-60 focused on two specific types of measures--(1) trans- portation system performance measures that support resource allocation and (2) program deliv- ery measures that help make the connection between outputs and outcomes. 2.2 The Benefits of Asset Management As defined in the Guide, the goals of asset management are to: · "Build, preserve, and operate facilities more cost-effectively with improved performance; · "Deliver to an agency's customers the best value for the public tax dollar spent; and · "Enhance the credibility and accountability of the transportation agency" (1 pp. 13). The principles of asset management can impact nearly every aspect of an agency's business--policy development, planning, finance, programming, project development, construction, and mainte- nance. Asset management should be viewed as a way of doing business as opposed to a separate 3