MassDOT Process for Soliciting and Selecting Research Projects

 

MASSDOT USES A MULTI-STEP PROCESS FOR SOLICITING AND SELECTING RESEARCH PROJECTS FOR FUNDING.

For MassDOT's 2022 Research Project solicitation and selection cycle (for FY2023 projects), MassDOT reached out to potential Project Champions (PCs) and Principal Investigators (PIs) early in 2022.

 MassDOT hosted three Research Roundtables sessions in April 2022 to bring state transportation practitioners and academic researchers together.  The Research Roundtables are part of the Research Problem Statement solicitation process that MassDOT holds each spring.  Research Roundtables bring transportation practitioners and academic researchers together to discuss research, innovation, and state transportation priorities. 

 

COMPLETED: RESEARCH PROBLEM STATEMENT SOLICITATION
The FY2023 Research Problem Statement Solicitation period ended on May 31, 2022.

Research Problem Statements were submitted through an online form at MassDOT.  Research Problem Statements could either be submitted by MassDOT/MBTA Project Champions (PCs) or by Researchers who have identified a PC and obtained their approval for the submission. If a RPS was submitted by a Researcher, that submission was required to be accompanied by an attached statement from the identified PC indicating their approval for the submission. 

Here is a presentation by MassDOT's Manager of Research Dr. Lily Oliver that gives an overview of MassDOT's process for soliciting and selecting Research Projects.   

The submitted topics should be related to surface transportation or intermodal transportation.  Also, the Research Problem Statements should address the following:

  • What question(s) is the PC seeking to answer through the project?
  • What deliverables should be part of the project, including any datasets or analytical tools?
  • How will the results of this project be used?
  • How will MassDOT benefit from this project?


COMPLETED:  SELECTION OF PROJECTS BEING PROPOSED FOR RESEARCH FUNDING

During this stage, MassDOT reviews the submitted Research Problem Statements and selects which ones will be advanced for potential funding.   

 

COMPLETED:  SUBMISSION OF PI INTEREST STATEMENTS BY RESEARCHERS

During this stage, MassDOT seeks academic researchers to conduct studies on the topics that are proposed for research funding.  A request goes out inviting qualified researchers to apply as PIs for the proposed projects.  Potential Principal Investigators (PIs) for these projects are asked to submit brief PI Interest Statements along with 2-page CVs for each PI/co-PI, by the deadline.  

PI INTEREST STATEMENTS ARE NO LONGER BEING ACCEPTED FOR THE 10 FY2023 RESEARCH PROJECTS LISTED BELOW.

PI Interest Statements were due by September 30th for the following 9 projects:

1. LIMMS Development Planning

2. Cross-Modal Impact Assessment for Sustainable Transportation Networks

3. Evaluating the Effectiveness of Driver's Education Modules on Safety

4. Accessible Bus Stop Design in the Presence of Bike Lanes

5. Measuring Fare Payment Compliance on MBTA Buses & Light Rail

6. Developing a Visualization, Sharing & Processing Platform for Large-Scale Highway Point Cloud Data 

7. Effect of Asphalt Binder Source on Asphalt Mixture Performance

8. Recycled Ground-Glass Pozzolan (RGGP) for Use in Cement Concrete 

9. 3D-Printed Lattice-based Structures for Next Generation Bridge Bearings & Bridge Isolation Bearings

PI Interest Statements were due by November 4th for the following project:

10. Speed Management & Emergency Response

 

COMPLETED FOR MOST PROJECTS: SELECTION OF PIs FOR RESEARCH PROJECTS

During this stage, MassDOT selects the PIs for the proposed projects and works with each PI to develop a detailed Scope of Work (SOW).  Funding approval is then sought by the Federal Highway Administration.  The research projects begin once FHWA approval has been obtained and funding received.