Detailed Justification for Transportation Analysis, Data Quality, and Performance Metrics

Detailed Justification for Transportation Analysis, Data Quality, and Performance Metrics

What Do I Need To Know Before Reading This Justification?

Access to high quality data and transportation metrics is vital in understanding the state of the transportation system. The Transportation Analysis, Data Quality, and Performance Metrics program works to ensure that the quality of U.S. DOT data is of the highest standards and that the metrics used to measure transportation performance are comprehensive.

  • BTS provides a wide range of transportation data analysis, such as the Transportation Services Index (TSI) for decision-makers and the public.
  • Within BTS the Office of Statistical Quality provides technical support to the Administration's performance management agenda, which includes the development of more comprehensive and outcome-focused performance measures.

What Is The Request And What Will We Get For The Funds?

FY 2012 Transportation Analysis, Data Quality, and Performance Metrics
Budget Request
($000)

Program Activity FY 2010 Actual FY 2012 Request ChangeFY 2010-2012
Transportation Analysis, Data Quality, and System Performance 7,416 7,268 -148
TOTAL 1, 2 $7,416 $7,268 -$148

1 FY 2012 decrease reflects reallocation of operating expenses.

2 The total funding includes salaries and administrative expenses and contract program.

Key Actions:

  • Produce, publish and make available online and limited print documents, and scheduled data releases. Provide technical support and transportation expertise to international data partnerships/exchanges.
  • The program will continue to produce relevant and timely focused analytical and technical reports on multimodal and intermodal transportation and statistics-related issues.
  • Provide data and statistics to agencies and organizations within and outside the U.S. in support of national and international statistics compilations.
  • Serve as the lead USDOT participant in the North American Transportation Statistics Interchange to promote and develop high quality, relevant, comparable data, and analysis for an efficient and fully integrated transportation system for North America.
  • Ensure the quality of the statistical compilations and of individual data programs throughout USDOT, and develop and maintain standards for transportation data to ensure accuracy and reliability.
  • Support USDOT in the interpretation and implementation of the statistical portion of the USDOT Information Dissemination Quality Guidelines.

Key Outputs:

  • 2011 Pocket Guide to Transportation;
  • 2011 Transportation Statistics Annual Report;
  • Monthly scheduled releases of the Transportation Services Index (TSI);
  • Bi-monthly updates and releases of Key Transportation Indicators, including development of new indicators;
  • Quarterly scheduled updates of the National Transportation Statistics (NTS);
  • Guidance to OST and modal administration on performance measures; BTS reports; and quality standards.

Key Outcomes:

  • Improved data quality and reliability;
  • Improved online access to key transportation statistics and analyses;
  • Online availability of intermodal and multimodal transportation data; and
  • Reliable performance measures for USDOT programs and projects.

What Is This Program?

Strategic Goals: Safety, economic competiveness, livable communities, state of good repair, environmental sustainability, and organizational excellence.

Purpose/Beneficiaries: This program makes high quality transportation data for all modes easily accessible. This program also develops transportation data standards and improves data accuracy.

Partners: USDOT modal administrations, OST, OMB, and international organizations.

Description: The Transportation Analysis, Data Quality and Performance Measurement program performs research and publishes multi-modal and intermodal transportation data and analysis covering critical and timely transportation topics with the goal of providing quality data and information for all modes of transportation for decision-making.

Prior Year Accomplishments:

  • Support the USDOT in the interpretation and implementation of the statistical portion of the USDOT Information Dissemination Quality Guidelines.
  • Support requests from USDOT, such as review of statistical methods in rulemaking processes to ensure that rulemakings are based on sound data.
  • Conduct statistical data quality reviews of data compilations and products.
  • Provide statistical support for the USDOT's Performance and Accountability Report.
  • Produce and publish the Transportation Statistics Annual Report (TSAR).
  • Produce and release the monthly Transportation Services Index (TSI).
  • Update, publish, and distribute the annual Pocket Guide to Transportation.
  • Update the web compendium of the National Transportation Statistics quarterly and produce an associated volume of the State Transportation Statistics.
  • Bi-monthly web update of the Key Transportation Indicators; evaluate Key Transportation Indicators Project for expansion.
  • Produce relevant and timely focused analytical and technical reports on transportation and statistics-related issues and data.

Why Is This Particular Program Necessary?

Information on performance of the transportation system for the Transportation Statistics Annual Report and guidelines for improved data quality and review of statistical reliability have been requested by Congress in the past.

This program supports the emphasis on performance measurement and management to improve the delivery of transportation services. Key to effective performance measurement is the availability of reliable, timely data, and the presentation of performance measures in effective forms.

This program brings together data from multiple sources to produce the Transportation Statistics Annual Report, which presents the state of the transportation system and the state of transportation data.

Statistical capabilities are necessary to ensure the reliability and validity of the statistical agency's products, support the data needs of USDOT, and facilitate compliance with legal requirements of the Information Quality Act. BTS evaluates performance measures used to assess USDOT performance.

Without this funding, the White House, Congress, OST and USDOT modal administrations would not have the multi-modal and intermodal data and information they now use for comparative analysis. USDOT would have no centralized authority and expertise in data quality standards and performance measurement.

How Do You Know The Program Works?

Effective: High demand from OST, modal administrations, researchers, and the public.

Research: Customer outreach; online customer survey (American Customer Satisfaction Index); data requests and downloads from RITA web pages and the library reference services; and stakeholder feedback.

Sub-program Balance: Emphasis on data quality, performance measurement; data dissemination and international partnerships to cover critical areas.

Efficient: One organization for transportation expertise and data quality guidance in all modes.

Why Do We Want/Need To Fund The Program At The Requested Level?

Funding options: FY 2012 $7.268M

History/outyear needs: FY 2010 $7.416M; FY 2012 $7.268M.