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Suggested Citation:"9.0 Implementing the Research." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Research on Creating and Sustaining a Culture of Innovation for Departments of Transportation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25308.
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Page 24
Page 25
Suggested Citation:"9.0 Implementing the Research." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Research on Creating and Sustaining a Culture of Innovation for Departments of Transportation. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/25308.
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Page 25

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24 9.0 – IMPLEMENTING THE RESEARCH The research team recommends the following actions to maximize the value of the guide. RECOMMENDATION: DEVELOP INNOVATION LAB BRANDING Most transportation practitioners are not aware of NCHRP’s research and guidance on creating and sustaining a culture of innovation. A basic branding effort would help connect the Guide and any subsequent products on a wide scale with practitioners. An innovation brand would include a name, a creative logo, a distinctive typeface, a uniform color palette and a compelling tag line. These elements would come together to create a brand image for everyone who interacts with this product from NCHRP. Each one of those facets individually is part of the innovation brand—and together they solidify the brand. Every user who sees and interacts with these brand pieces will begin to connect those pieces with the Guide and NCHRP as a key innovation culture resource. These principles have been put into practice on other transportation-themed projects, including NCHRP’s Foresight series and the FHWA/SHRP2 PlanWorks series. Awareness building with an initial specific look and feel has already been launched via the Transportation Lab website (www.transportationlab.org). RECOMMENDATION: MAXIMIZE VALUE OF NCHRP’S INNOVATION LAB WEBSITE One of the research project’s deliverables is a static website that highlights key research findings, but the website also provides opportunities for future enhancement and integration with other communication channels to help spread word about the Guide. In the future, the research team suggests the website become a dedicated home for NCHRP’s broader innovation efforts, where it is interwoven with other communication channels. It would become a place on the Web where audiences can follow up on snippets of information they receive via other communication mechanisms, like email blasts, conference presentations, webinars, or web videos. The website’s design would reinforce the branding identity of the research as a general resource for information about innovation among state DOTs. As a rule of thumb, content on the site would be designed to stay fresh and be simple to maintain. Figure 3: Examples of transportation-related branding efforts

25 RECOMMENDATION: DEVELOP STATE DOT INNOVATION LAB TRAINING/WORKSHOPS Some focus group participants indicated that while the Guide provided them with a lot of helpful information, they struggled with how to get started. Translating the Guide’s content into customizable training materials and/or a workshop format could be an effective way to put its content into action. These materials and/or workshops would be highly practical and encourage participants to work on the challenges they currently face. They would be set up as day-long events at DOTs and would rely on a highly interactive and engaging approach that stimulates agency personnel – from leadership to frontline employees – to think about how to apply the principles of innovation in the context of their own organization. The workshops could use elements of the Guide, like the self-assessment tool, as well as other elements referenced in this section, such as the explainer video, to engage audiences in different ways. Participants would be given the opportunity to develop an action plan for their organizations to help them launch or sustain innovative efforts. RECOMMENDATION: DEVELOP WEB EXPLAINER VIDEO FOR INNOVATION GUIDE DOT practitioners are typically pressed for time, so they do not often have time to read a lengthy report or attend specialized meetings on topics they may have an interest in, like innovation. Standalone web videos are highly appealing to audiences seeking a short-cut overview before investing in deeper-cut material. They are also easy to share and view, which makes them a great delivery mechanism for promoting resources to a wider audience. Web video is a desirable complement to basic email blasts and conference presentations and can be a conversation starter. The research team recommends using simple video production techniques to introduce the guide and its most compelling advice. The video’s tone could be similar to a TED Talk: simple, straightforward and thought- provoking. The web video could be prominently featured on the NCHRP Innovation Lab website, shared via email news blasts, and incorporated as part of the agenda at various transportation conferences. For example, the Foresight introductory video helped set the stage for Keynote in a Box and Workshop in a Box education materials (Video is available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NkOnlXICDQk&feature=youtu.be) RECOMMENDATION: DEVELOP AN INNOVATION LAB WEBINAR Webinars are low-cost communication tools compared to conferences, since they eliminate travel costs for participants and presenters. They also have a larger potential audience because they are easy to record, share and view via the Web. The research team suggests creating a webinar based around a set of PowerPoint slides that introduce the guide and explore highlighted content from the document. After the webinar has debuted, it could be accessed via the NCHRP Innovation Lab website. RECOMMENDATION: DEVELOP AN INNOVATION LAB CONFERENCE PRESENTATION-IN- A-BOX The research team recommends working with regional or national conference organizers to incorporate an innovation-themed presentation that can be delivered by senior executives – supported with talking points and slides similar to those used for the webinar described above. A high-level introduction could create awareness, but would rely on influencers directing practitioners to the website, video or guide for more information.

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TRB's National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) Web-Only Document 248: Research on Creating and Sustaining a Culture of Innovation for Departments of Transportation documents the research process and provides key guidance to implement the research produced in

NCHRP Research Report 885

: Guide to Creating and Sustaining a Culture of Innovation for Departments of Transportation. This guide provides insight on encouraging and sustaining a culture of innovation within the organization, its partners, and other stakeholders. A culture of innovation supports agency managers and staff efforts to encourage and accept innovation as a means to enhance the agency’s success. This guide is designed to assist agencies in assessing their culture with respect to innovation, identifying ways to make the organization more adaptable and open to beneficial change, and sustaining the organization’s adaptability to respond effectively to evolving technology, workforce, and public priorities.

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