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This report describes and, where possible, quantifies the value of information and information services for transportation agencies. It evaluates the various means of accessing information and looks at the important role of the information professional.

In 1994, the Transportation Research Board Committee A5001 on the Conduct of Research addressed the need to improve recognition of the value of information, information services, and information professionals. As a result, the Federal Highway Administration initiated a project overseen by a panel of technical experts to 1) determine the value of information and informa tion services and 2) identify strategies for promoting information programs (included in this report as an appendix).

This report documents how information services help transportation agencies operate more efficiently and effectively. Based on an extensive literature search and interviews with public- and private-sector experts, it shows that the value of information can be measured in terms of: 1) reduced costs of agency research, technology development, and operations; 2) quicker implementation of innovations and time savings, and 3) more effective decision making at all levels of the agency. The support of top management is also an indicator of the value information and information services hold within an organization.

This report documents that information services are of significant value to transportation agencies. It also identifies a number of areas where existing programs and resources need to be strengthened. Recommendations for the Federal Highway Administration and its partners include:

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Electronic version of Publication No. FHWA-SA-99-038
This page last updated August 18, 1999

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United States Department of Transportation - Federal Highway Administration