Role of Blockchain Enabled Smart Contracts in Facilitating Transportation Sector Projects

Challenges faced in construction projects can be directly proportional to the growth of their complexity. Complexity would in turn affect the time and cost of a project, thus affecting its definition of success. The growing domain of the transportation sector is one that is susceptible to such complexities. With over 100 billion dollars in the 2023 yearly fiscal budget, the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) attains an amalgam of projects to meet the objectives of its administrations. Such would be accomplished through mega projects of a complex nature. Various research has evaluated complex factors attributed to transportation mega projects namely financial, sociopolitical, technical, environmental, and organizational. Therefore, the need arises to deal with said factors. This research would then focus on the organizational complexity that would involve the administrative effort allocated to a project within the USDOT; such would mainly include the payment process, the relationship between project stakeholders, and the application of contract conditions. The aforementioned can be overcome by diminishing the need for human intervention to ensure secure and automated flow between project stakeholders. Blockchain technology can be used to improve information flow frameworks by eliminating information fragmentation, poor traceability, and lack of real-time information. It can also be utilized in the administration of multiparty projects to enhance the authority, security, and transparency of recordkeeping systems. A blockchain tool, smart contracts, offers the ability to implement contract terms and in turn, facilitate payments between parties in a secure and automated manner. The advantage of a smart contract payment system over other automated systems is that it provides a secure, efficient, and trustworthy platform for the security of payments of contracts. It also offers decentralized control and guaranteed execution. Consequently, it has the potential to enable savings in fees, reduce administrative costs and burdens, expedite the payment process, and allow multiple control entities. To this end, there is a need to investigate: (1) the current challenges, needs, requirements, and capabilities associated with the applications of blockchain and smart contracts technologies in transportation operations; and (2) the functional areas where the integration of blockchain and smart contracts can be most valuable.


    • English


    • Status: Active
    • Contract Numbers:


    • Sponsor Organizations:

      Center for Durable and Resilient Transportation Infrastructure

      University of Texas, Arlington
      Arlington, TX  United States  76019

      Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology

      University Transportation Centers Program
      Department of Transportation
      Washington, DC  United States  20590
    • Start Date: 20230901
    • Expected Completion Date: 0
    • Actual Completion Date: 0

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01909696
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: Center for Durable and Resilient Transportation Infrastructure
    • Contract Numbers: 69A3552348339
    • Files: UTC, RIP
    • Created Date: Feb 23 2024 4:31PM