The National Academies

NCHRP 20-103 [Final]

Guidance for Development and Management of Sustainable Information Portals

  Project Data
Funds: $250,000
Research Agency: Applied Engineering Management Corporation
Principal Investigator: Benjamin Pecheux
Effective Date: 4/17/2015
Completion Date: 7/16/2017

State departments of transportation (DOTs) produce and use a variety of data and information to make decisions about development, operation, and upkeep of the systems for which they are responsible. The DOT’s personnel, contractors and consultants, and the system’s users and other stakeholders seek access to this information for a variety of purposes. Open government initiatives, the increasingly interdisciplinary nature of work within agencies, greater collaboration with external partners, and growing demands for transparency in government agency operations, as well as growing volumes of data and information to be managed are driving increasing demand for access to DOT data and information. (For this research, the terms "data" and "information" are essentially interchangeable; data and information are used in various applications to conduct analyses and provide results of value to decision makers and interested observers.) In recent years, web access has become a primary way of enabling users to get the information they want in a timely and cost-effective manner. Enterprise information portals (EIPs), in particular, have become key tools a DOT can use to make available information about the transportation system and the agency’s activities. As used in this project, an EIP is curated; that is, there are people responsible for establishing the portal architecture, ensuring the quality of information and data, and maintaining the reliability of access. Access to an EIP may be provided in various ways, but the primary focus of this research is access via a web interface. Many DOTs have implemented one or more EIPs but face the need to evolve these portals or create new ones to meet both internal and external users’ demands for information. Research is needed to enhance agency personnel’s understanding of the value, uses, design, and maintenance of EIPs--and the design principles, management practices, and performance characteristics that will ensure that a DOT’s EIPs effectively and sustainably serve its users and the agency’s mission.
The objective of this research was to produce a guide to development and management of effective DOT enterprise information portals. The guide is intended to help agency business-management personnel to understand the issues to be addressed in making information and data about the state’s transportation system and agency operations available to information users and the responsibilities and costs associated with portal development and maintenance. The guide will also help agency information technology managers to develop strategies for evolving existing EIPs and creating new ones to effectively and sustainably deliver information of value to users.
NCHRP Research Report 865 Guide for Development and Management of Sustainable Enterprise Information Portals has been published and is available for download by clicking here.  A report of the research work has also been published as  NCHRP Web-Only Document 241: Development and Management of Sustainable Enterprise Information Portals.  The research report, a PowerPoint presentation, and use case diagrams referenced in the report (in Visio format through a zip file) are available for download from the web page linked here.
In addition, the research team prepared a web-based version of the guide to illustrate application of the guidance and provide a template for deploying the information as a portal. The unedited version may be downloaded as a zipped file of the HTML encoded static web site (88 MB) by clicking here.  A WordPress version backup file (281 MB) may be downloaded by clicking here.  Using these files requires appropriate server software.

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