Identify Emerging Approaches for Public Engagement to Meaningfully Involve Minorities, Low-Income, and Other Vulnerable Populations

In light of recent public emphasis on diversity, equity, and inclusion, there is a renewed urgency to reconsider transportation decision-making practices and policies that lead to inequity in transportation outcomes and identify how new approaches or models might positively impact transportation planning and decision-making. Notably, there is the need to examine the strategies, methods, and techniques for effectively engaging more vulnerable populations in transportation decision-making, including but not necessarily limited to, low-income and minority populations and communities. While several studies and guidebooks have focused on effective public involvement supporting transportation decision-making, including methods to engage low-income, minority, low-English literacy and other vulnerable populations, there is a need to focus research on those methods and strategies that provide meaningful involvement. This is particularly important for low-income and minority communities that often are not engaged in the political process and stand to lose the most if their needs are not considered. . This research shall seek to identify and define what meaningful public engagement consists of and the outcomes that can be achieved in the decision-making process by practicing effective engagement. In so doing, it will seek to identify the most pressing challenges in obtaining the meaningful involvement of minority, low-income, and other vulnerable populations in transportation decision-making. It will build on and reflect the well-documented research on this topic through the lens of recent experience, particularly in light of the effects and challenges that all-virtual public engagement, an outgrowth of COVID-19, has created for agencies and communities. The research should then assess and identify what are determined to be effective approaches for engagement that respond to those challenges that facilitate a more successful decision outcome for state departments of transportation and the full array of communities that they serve.


  • English


  • Status: Proposed
  • Funding: $500000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 08-161

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    National Cooperative Highway Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)

    444 North Capitol Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Weeks, Jennifer

  • Start Date: 20210524
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01772195
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 08-161
  • Files: TRB, RIP
  • Created Date: May 24 2021 3:14PM