Experience has shown that chief executive officers (CEOs) of state departments of transportation (DOTs) value and benefit from opportunities to discuss the challenges and experience of DOT leadership with their peers. In addition, at any particular time a number of CEOs have relatively little tenure in their positions; these newer CEOs often find the experience and insights of their more seasoned peers to be particularly helpful.
AASHTO leadership and staff seek to make such opportunities available periodically by organizing peer exchanges and leadership forums highlighting current issues facing the organization’s member agencies. The typical CEO peer exchange combines facilitated group discussions of selected management topics and informal conversations during meals and breaks. The topics covered may be drawn from research under the NCHRP Project 20-24 series of projects, which are focused on the needs of state DOT leadership; collected from advance surveys of participants; or identified by the NCHRP. In addition to providing a unique forum for CEOs, the discussions also inform NCHRP staff on current and emerging issues of significant concern nationally that may be priority topics for research.
Activities to support peer exchanges typically entail (1) identifying current issues to be the focus of discussions, (2) providing well-qualified facilitators and preparing briefing materials in advance that will motivate discussion, (3) convening an invited group of executives at an appropriate location, (4) facilitating these executives’ discussions, and (5) documenting the events to provide an ongoing resource for attendees and others.
The objective of this research is to organize, support, deliver, and document a series of 6 in-person state DOT CEO peer exchanges that will provide useful information for CEOs in more effectively fulfilling their responsibilities.
- Two peer exchanges will be designed for new CEOs.
- Four peer exchanges will be designed for a mix of new and more seasoned CEOs; 1 will be held in each AASHTO region although attendance at each peer exchange will be open to any CEO. These peer exchanges are anticipated to be held on a quarterly basis beginning in 2022. The issues discussed will be unique for each event.