Answers to some frequently asked questions about the SHRP2 Implementation Assistance Program.
If you need additional information about the Implementation Assistance Program, please contact us. Direct questions about specific products and opportunities for those products to the FHWA technical lead listed on each product application page.
What is the overall purpose of the SHRP2 Implementation Assistance Program?
The Implementation Assistance Program provides support to organizations for the deployment of SHRP2 products. That support may be in the form of funding or technical assistance. Three levels of assistance are offered to meet the varied needs of the products and the applicants who wish to deploy them. Application periods, also called application rounds, are generally offered twice each year.
Why should my organization participate in the implementation of SHRP2 products?
SHRP2 products address areas that are meaningful to highway users, such as increasing safety, reducing congestion, minimizing disruption to users during road rehabilitation, and providing new capacity that enhances mobility and avoids environmental harm. SHRP2 products help highway professionals work more efficiently and effectively as they design, build, operate, and maintain America’s highways.
What are the roles of AASHTO, FHWA, TRB, and DOTs in the SHRP2 Implementation Assistance Program?
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), and Transportation Research Board (TRB) have worked collaboratively to advance SHRP2 since its inception. TRB is responsible for the management of the research efforts. After the research is completed, FHWA has the lead responsibility for implementing SHRP2, in collaboration with AASHTO and TRB. FHWA and AASHTO are actively working together to deploy the initial research products that are available and of high interest. While State departments of transportation (DOTs) are the primary recipients and users of the SHRP2 products, many other stakeholders including local highway agencies, metropolitan planning organizations, FHWA Federal Lands offices, and resource agencies, among others, may also use or benefit from SHRP2 innovations.
What is the role of the FHWA division office in SHRP2 implementation?
FHWA division offices familiarize their State DOT partners with SHRP2 Solutions and encourage the implementation of appropriate products within the States. For specific information on any product, applicants should contact the FHWA Technical Liaison listed on a specific product page or on the application page for products currently open for Implementation Assistance applications.
What are the procedures and requirements for submitting applications?
- Applications are submitted through this website. You will find the application form for each available product under Assistance Opportunities.
- Each application requires a leadership endorsement from the Chief Executive Officer (or designee) of an organization or agency. A letter of leadership endorsement must be attached to each application.
- Each application requires a priority ranking. When multiple applications are submitted from an organization or agency, each application must have a designated priority ranking. An agency must rank applications in one grouping including all product submissions. For example, an agency submitting four applications (one application for each product C19, R07, R09, and R16) must rank each application in priority order from 1 to 4, with 1 as the highest priority and 4 as the lowest priority. For convenience, a box has been placed at the top of each application to designate the priority ranking.
Should I mail or otherwise submit a physical copy of the leadership endorsement letter?No. An electronic version of the endorsement letter must be attached as part of the online application process through the website. Physical or "hard" copies of endorsements are not necessary.
What is the purpose of different levels of participation?
The three levels of participation offer progressive assistance based on the current level of readiness of each product and on the applicant’s experience with each product. The Proof of Concept Pilots are intended primarily for products that may have had limited trial testing or need additional refinement. The Proof of Concept level offers highway agencies opportunities to help evaluate the readiness of a product, and to gain more experience in the use of the product. The Lead Adopter Incentive provides assistance for organizations to participate as lead adopters in the implementation of a product. As lead adopters, these organizations take a more active role in product implementation, may assume a greater risk in implementing the product, and may be called on to help communicate the use of the product and assist with implementation for other interested organizations. The User Incentive provides assistance to organizations that are interested in a product but may not wish to participate at the lead adopter level at this time. The User Incentive offers an opportunity for an organization to assess the product and to make organizational changes that may be needed to facilitate future product implementation.
Why does each product have different implementation activities and implementation assistance?
The implementation activities and associated assistance opportunities are intended to address the unique nature and level of readiness of each product, and take into account the risk associated with implementing a product at various stages of readiness. There is inherently more risk at a lead adopter stage than at a user incentive stage, and that risk will vary from product to product.
Will there be additional implementation opportunities in the future?
Yes. Implementation Assistance opportunities will occur approximately twice per year.
For future implementation opportunities, will additional products be included, and will products in earlier rounds sometimes be available at different participation levels in later rounds?
Yes. Future implementation opportunities will include additional SHRP2 products that are available and ready for full implementation. Also, future assistance may also include additional implementation assistance opportunities for products that were included in previous rounds.
What are some examples of implementation activities and risk mitigation that can be supported by the implementation assistance funding?
There is a wide range of activities that constitutes product implementation since the products are quite different. For example, an organization may implement a product as part of the project development or construction phase of an active highway project. Other examples of implementation activities include hosting peer exchanges, workshops, training sessions, and other types of outreach. The implementation assistance may help to offset additional costs, activities, and requirements of implementing a project.
How will the final funding amounts be determined and transferred to the DOTs?
Following the closing date, FHWA, in coordination with AASHTO and others, evaluate the applications received. FHWA makes final decisions about which applications will be funded, the amounts and types of implementation assistance needed, and the establishment of project agreements with the organizations receiving the funds.
When will implementation services and assistance be available to the selected organizations?
FHWA anticipates providing final decisions approximately 1 month after the open period ends. FHWA will begin to provide implementation assistance as soon as possible after making those decisions. Depending on the type of assistance, this process could take several weeks or more.
Is there any limit on the number of applications that an organization can submit?
No. An organization may submit applications for more than one product, and can submit multiple projects for the same type of product award.
Will a match be required?
No. While we don’t anticipate that a match will be required, we will follow all Federal-aid requirements.
Is this a grant program?
No. The funding that is mentioned in the implementation assistance application applies to technical assistance and the costs associated with that assistance. This can take the form of peer exchanges, consultant services, conferences, scholarships, training, as well as many other activities, including helping to offset the additional risk taken on by lead adopters.
Can I link several products into one big project?
Yes. We would encourage you to look for opportunities to link several of these products into one project. To do so, you should apply for each product implementation opportunity you are pursuing. In each application, you should reference your interest/application for the other products. This will enable us to understand fully your intentions.
To what extent will technical experts be provided to the selected applicants to assist in implementation efforts?
While each of these products varies greatly, FHWA is committed to ensuring that each recipient of this implementation assistance is provided the right level of support. Please refer to the individual product implementation assistance for more details.
How much detail should be provided in the applications to be successful in obtaining a SHRP2 Implementation Award?
This application is not meant to be lengthy or burdensome to the applicants. In some cases, product applications provide additional instructions, which also should be followed by applicants. Applicants are encouraged to contact the FHWA Technical Liaison, AASHTO, and/or TRB for clarity on questions about a particular product offered. If further information is needed from an applicant, the FHWA Technical Liaison will contact that applicant for additional information. Additionally, once applicants are selected to receive implementation assistance, a more detailed project agreement will be developed.
Is there an opportunity after the application deadline, but before the award decision, to discuss and negotiate the exact requirements of a State?
No. Applicants are encouraged to contact the FHWA Technical Liaison listed on each product “Apply” page of this Web site with any specific questions about the product or application requirements prior to the deadline. After the deadline, should further clarification be needed, FHWA will contact the applicant for additional information.
What do the numbers mean in relation to the product? (C19 for example?)
During SHRP2’s research phase, each research project was assigned a letter/number code to help keep track of the more than 100 research efforts. The research codes begin with a letter designation that corresponds to SHRP2 focus areas from which the project originated: Renewal (R), Reliability (L), Capacity (C), or Safety (S). The codes are included here as a reference for people who were involved in the research phase of the product, and can be easily used as a reference if an applicant would like to use the TRB or AASHTO Web sites to view the research reports and/or results.
How many rounds of implementation assistance does FHWA plan to open? When will the last round occur?
There have been four Rounds of implementation assistance to date. Rounds 5 and 6 are planned for 2015. Currently, the last implementation assistance round (Round 6) is scheduled to open in June 2015.
What will happen after the IAP ends? How will FHWA and AASHTO inform the States, MPOs, and others about the remaining (non-IAP) research projects or products?
Each SHRP2 research project that resulted in a product has its own implementation plan developed by a volunteer group made up of product stakeholders from FHWA, AASHTO, TRB, and potential users. Implementation and knowledge transfer efforts extend far beyond the scope of the Implementation Assistance Program, and may include technical assistance, training, peer learning, and outreach activities.
SHRP2 research reports for each project are currently available on the TRB SHRP2 Publications web page.
How will IAP recipients share their IAP results and findings with others?
IAP recipients are required to document their use of SHRP2 products. In some cases, this can be done through lessons learned and best practices, or peer learning workshops. Organizations interested in applications of a specific SHRP2 product, can access the list of current IAP recipients on the GoSHRP2 website product page.