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I-74 tools, and the fact that data programs are not linked. Specific The biggest challenge may be one of organizational cul- items are described in the following sections. ture change. Managers and directors need to gain more experience in performance-based decision-making and management. Establishing the Need for Data In the case of the Maryland SHA, the largest data sharing Management/Governance challenge is coordinating with outside agencies that provide From a corporate perspective, the investment in IT systems performance data for key or legislatively required measures. has to be justified by a benefit, and the benefit of better data This is a particular challenge in the area of Safety, where data quality is often not worth the incremental investment. such as incidents, fatalities, and injuries must be collected State DOTs similarly, are faced with the challenge of justi- from police reports. This information frequently must be fying the benefit to the agency in investing in better data derived from hand-written and/or paper records, and is very quality standards, processes, and policies. time consuming. In a private sector company example, there was a group within the organization that was responsible for data Executing a Data Management Plan quality, but the group was disbanded because it was per- Lack of data standards causes adverse impacts on data inte- ceived that they did not add value to the organization. gration efforts. This makes it even more challenging when the company acquires other companies and has to merge data across databases. Maintaining Data Management Having better, readily available data would make a tremen- Data quality within the organization may not be good dous difference in the ability to measure progress in meeting enough to support decisions. Need to improve data quality. performance targets. Non-integrated data systems limit the sharing of informa- The biggest gap in data is with trading partners that use tion and sound decision-making, based on data programs. different information systems. ABC Logistics relies on solid Data providers need to learn how to "market" their product. relationships with its partners to ensure continued attention to improving data quality. State DOTs similarly are faced with the challenge of merging data from separate, silo sys- Linking to Planning, Performance Measures tems, perhaps from different offices, or divisions within the and Target Processes DOT. Developing a partnership with those offices facilitates There is often difficulty in identifying what performance the development of processes to integrate the needed data measures are needed and how to establish metrics for those and information into one system. measures. External influences and/or political pressures often influ- 4.9 Future Research ence funding for various programs. While the use of per- formance measures and targets can demonstrate the need Transportation agencies continuously find themselves faced for sustaining various data programs, organizations should with challenges from many constantly changing variables out- understand that ultimately, external mandates may repri- side their control: inflation, political priorities, and revenues, oritize organizational goals and targets, and subsequently for example. It is within this environment that transportation data programs. agencies must establish a data based planning, programming, There is a need to address the gap between data supported and budgeting decision framework. Agencies need to develop decisions and data-driven decisions. short term project budgets and long term financial plans for Specific performance measures may not be pursued because TIPS, STIPS and LRTPs. Available resources, including money a baseline cannot be developed using existing data (i.e., per- and data, affect the establishment and attainment of perfor- cent reduction in error in all transactions, etc.). mance targets. Not having data centralized is the biggest challenge to target- setting and performance management. Data currently Risk Assessment are collected in a variety of formats in a number of different legacy systems. These legacy systems require duplicate entry As a result of the uncertainties facing transportation agen- of data into multiple systems. cies, there is an opportunity to apply risk assessment and man- Improvements in data quality and quantity would allow agement to PBRA. However, few examples of comprehensive for improved performance-based decision-making and risk management exist beyond limited application in system management. preservation and asset management areas such as pavement

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I-75 and bridge maintenance. For example, NCHRP Report 632: Information Technology Tools An Asset-Management Framework to the Interstate Highway System recently provided guidance on risk assessment in Data management systems within transportation agencies the context of managing the Interstate highway system; the must incorporate data sharing ability and techniques to effec- 8th National Conference on Transportation Asset Manage- tively support target-setting and PBRA. This report and subse- ment also provides examples.10,11 There is a need for further quent guidance includes data sharing topics such as technology research on the role of risk management within the overall for sharing and integrating data. It also discusses how evolving performance management framework. Development of an trends such as data exchange formats are affecting data sharing. annotated list of specific methods in use, their strengths However, there is a need to expand on this research/guidance to and weaknesses, and potential applications to PBRA would cover issues such as the role information technology plays in be a useful next step. supporting data management particularly related to target- setting and PBRA. Specific topics include expanding the knowl- edge base on the use of business intelligence tools which are applicable in the transportation environment; the role of data security/access in supporting or hindering data sharing; and 10Cambridge Systematics et al., NCHRP Report 632: An Asset-Management Frame- data privacy issues and its impact on data sharing. A primer work for the Interstate Highway System. Transportation Research Board of the related to the impact of these data sharing information technol- National Academies. Washington, DC. 2009. 11Eighth National Conference on Transportation Asset Management (http:// ogy topics on the success of data management for PBRA should be prepared.