The Scenario

A national-level performance report shows the agency’s pavement condition lagging behind that of its nearest neighbor states. In the local media, these data are being used to draw conclusions about the effectiveness of the agency’s management. However, there is reason to believe that this gap does not reflect a true “apples-to-apples” comparison. Factors including data collection methods and decades-old historic condition trends tell part of the story. So, too do differences in current pavement maintenance investment levels between the states. The agency wants to be proactive in contextualizing the performance gaps. It is seeking to develop communications products that address the basis for comparison between the states’ reported pavement conditions. It plans to develop a series of infographics that graphically illustrate the performance results as well as the exogenous factors that are contributing to the “apples-to-oranges” comparison.

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