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Performance Specifications Strategic Roadmap: A Vision for the Future

Chapter 4. Organization and Management

Management Structure

An organization or a movement? The Performance Specification Program is a combination of both elements. The program has established a Technical Working Group to establish and oversee the road map and its execution. Fundamental to the road map is the identification and formation of expert task groups that will do the bulk of the technical work specific to that discipline. In the diagram below, boxes connected with solid lines represent structure in place, while those with dotted lines are anticipated.

Management organizational structure. This diagram is a flowchart with four tiers. On the top tier is a single box labeled TWG. The second tier, all branching off of TWG, has four boxes, labeled: NDT Testing Computer Integration Task Force; Risk Analysis Task Force; Communication and Training Task Force; and Definitions Task Force. The third tier, branching off of the 1st and 2nd tier, has five boxes. The first two, representing existing structures, are: Pavements ETG; and Pavement Preservation ETG. The other three boxes, representing anticipated structures, are: Geotech ETG; Bridge Deck ETG; and Safety and Work Zone ETG. The last tier, branching off of the Pavements ETG box, has two bowes: Concrete Pavement Task Force; and Asphalt Pavement Task Force.

Working Group and Task Group Membership

The Technical Working Group will consist of representatives from FHWA, State DOTs, industry, and academia with background, expertise, and interest in promoting the performance specification concept. Each expert task group will have one representative on the Technical Working Group. Membership will be flexible. As emphasis on various goals and tasks changes, Technical Working Group membership will change appropriately. It is expected that the Technical Working Group will average 14 representatives.

Current members include five representatives from State DOTs, five from FHWA, four from the pavement industry, and one from academia. Among the DOT members are representatives from the AASHTO Subcommittees on Materials and Construction, and the Joint Task Force on Pavements. Included in the FHWA membership are representatives from the Offices of Pavement, Bridge Technology, Infrastructure, and Research and Development. Finally, members should represent disciplines with active expert task groups. With disciplines such as geotechnology, safety, bridges, etc., it is expected that the membership will be adjusted to reflect the diversity of the mission and the particulars of each group.

The Technical Working Group will assemble task forces as required to help guide the program. A Definitions Task Force would build on work done by the Transportation Research Board Committee on Management of Quality Assurance, which manages the Glossary of Highway Quality Assurance Terms. The task force would review the definitions in the glossary and recommend updates to reflect PRS and warranty developments. A Communications and Training Task Force would develop a broad outreach program that covers the full spectrum of PS activities and work with the TCCC. A Non-Destructive Testing and Computer Integration Task Force would look at innovations in both of these areas and recommend ways to incorporate them into the various PS activities. Finally, a Risk Analysis Task Force would look at the transfer of roles and responsibilities between transportation agencies and contractors as a result of PS developments. This task force would organize risk management through a quantitative approach that includes a manual and guidelines.

Administrative Support

It is important for at least one organization to take responsibility for the overall program, but in the process allow for the many disciplines involved to participate and cooperate. The FHWA Office of Asset Management will serve as the program's administrative arm. In accepting this role, it will maintain the road map, prepare status reports, and support the activities of the Technical Working Group. The Office of Asset Management also will provide in-house and consultant services, as necessary, to support the effort.

Roles and Responsibilities

The Technical Working Group will guide the program and provide technical support and make recommendations to the FHWA, the states, and industry on how best to accomplish the goals and tasks presented in Chapter 3. The expert task groups will do the same within their specific program areas. The TWG will have the added responsibility of determining if performance principles, definitions, training, and outreach efforts initiated by the expert task groups are reasonably consistent and in harmony with the overall definition of the program. The TWG will also make final recommendations to FHWA and other stakeholders implementing PRS.


How long will this performance specification development effort go on? In reality, it is a long-term process. The road map covers the next five years. Table 1 shows the major activities that will be integrated into the goals and tasks presented in Chapter 3. Table 2 outlines the significant accomplishments expected over the same time period.

It should be recognized that the entire program is based on volunteerism by the DOTs and industry and that dependencies abound. It is up to the major national organizations to support the key activities.

Table 1. Activities Timeline
Performance Specification Program Major Activities
National and International Outreach EffortsFL DOT PRS Workshop National WorkshopInternational Performance Symposium National WorkshopInternational Performance Symposium
TWG Meetings2222222
ETG Meetings246-106-106-106-106-10
National Research Initiatives  F-SHRP (anticipated) 
  FHWA (anticipated) 
Outreach ActivitiesPRS Database Newsletter, Articles, Flyers
Construction ProjectsExperimental and Demonstration Projects
Specification DatabaseNational Specification Database Performance Specification Section
Table 2. Accomplishment Timeline
Performance Specification Program Major Accomplishments by 2008
By the end of:The program should:
2004Establish a formal Technical Working Group management, structure, and financial support system within FHWA.
Establish four to eight permanent technical expert task groups with strategic plans in operation.
Implement a quarterly newsletter program.
Complete and distribute a management brochure.
Implement a fully operational performance specification database.
2005Connect to a nationally funded research effort through FHWA's R&D and/or AASHTO's F-SHRP.
Develop a detailed, comprehensive research plan for each expert task group.
Develop and implement expert task group outreach plans.
Draft performance specifications for select technical items in each expert task group area.
Initiate experimental and demonstration projects.
2006Conduct the first International Specification Symposium.
Identify and evaluate risk methodology.
Evaluate additional modeling, performance data, and construction relationships.
2007Implement major research and deployment efforts.
2008Complete draft performance specification book.
Complete draft warranty manual.
Complete draft risk manual.
AASHTO Adoption of Performance Guide Specifications.
2009-2020A viable contract option
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Updated: 06/27/2017
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