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Publication Number: FHWA-SA-96-015
Date: April 1996
For the fourth time in as many years, the international coordinators for the Strategic Highway Research Program (SHRP) assembled in Washington, D.C., to share ideas and information on the implementation of SHRP products and the continuation of the international long-term pavement performance (LTPP) studies. The meeting, held in conjunction with the Transportation Research Board (TRB) annual meeting and hosted by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and TRB, brought together 32 people from 20 countries. FHWA's Joe Toole, director of the Office of Technology Applications, and John Clements, associate administrator for research and development, were also in attendance, as was Frank Francois, executive director of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), and Neil Hawks, director of special programs for TRB.
During SHRP's research phase, the coordinators were conduits of information: they brought news of SHRP to their countries, and they kept the SHRP research team apprised of experiments and evaluations conducted in their countries. They served as advisors to the research projects and as staff in SHRP headquarters. Convinced of the value of this international cooperation, the coordinators were determined to continue this partnership once the LTPP research program transferred from SHRP to FHWA.
One of the key issues discussed at the meeting centered on improving communication between U.S. agencies (FHWA, AASHTO, and TRB) and the international coordinators. The distance between countries can be a barrier to communication. To help remedy this, international representatives will be added to the FHWA/TRB advisory committees for SHRP implementation and for the LTPP program.
Clements announced that FHWA is interested in creating an international coordinator position at FHWA. It would be a loaned-staff position--the coordinator's home agency would continue to pay his or her salary, with FHWA possibly providing some living expenses. Such arrangements worked very well for SHRP: the loaned staffers brought new insight and expertise and took home new knowledge.
For more information on the LTPP international activities, contact Shahed Rowshan, FHWA, 703-285-2527 (fax: 703-285-2767).
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