Getting the Federal Government to do "The Math"

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By Polly Trottenberg, Executive Director, Building America's Future

The U.S. is noteworthy for the lack of goal-based criteria or performance measures in its infrastructure programs and our extremely poor data collection on transportation at the federal, state and municipal levels. With growing consensus among the transportation community that the next transportation bill should include strong national goals and ways to evaluate performance against those goals, our poor data collection poses serious hurdles.

Informed by a politically diverse focus group of current and past Congressional staffers, transportation experts and statisticians, the paper makes recommendations on how to better inform and motivate members of Congress and administration officials to integrate data and analysis into the next surface transportation bill.  

This paper is the second in a series of three papers commissioned for America 2050's recent workshop, "Envisioning a Trans-American Network."