[NTC2014-SU-T2-02] Moving Transportation Research to Practice: TPID Webinar Series

James Martin
North Carolina State University
Subject Area: 
Technology Transfer (T2)

Transportation researchers frequently struggle to effectively communicate research findings to practitioners, administrators, policy-makers and public officials. At the same time, these decision-makers are constantly seeking more and better information to help them understand the dynamics of transportation questions to design and implement projects and programs. This disconnect is attributable, in part, to the investment in time and training required to understand and interpret the results of technical analyses and to the typical format of research product deliverables. Yet the challenge is also a cultural one: while researchers strive to cultivate objectivity in order to communicate research results, they also must be prepared to recognize and respond to the normative, value-driven, and diverse needs of the audiences who are in a position to inform implementation with research findings. To address this challenge, TPID consortium member North Carolina State University (NCSU) proposes a series of four (4) live presentation and discussion webinars that will provide a high-profile venue for TPID researchers to present selected research findings to a national and international audience, and also will provide the transportation research community with valuable information and insights on how to improve their skills in communicating research findings. The series will align with TPID’s proposed technology transfer effort to “develop a technical seminar series featuring investigators at the consortium and invited speakers from other organizations” (National UTC proposal pages 3, 24). The series also will be a step beyond the typical research dissemination webinar to include a unique professional education component with the goal of increasing the relevance and practical impact of transportation research and the effectiveness of researchers in connecting with policy- and decision-makers.