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Department of Transportation

Ensuring our nation's future infrastructure is equitable and efficient

Connecting strategy, design, and public needs to lead the implementation of an equity assessment and the creation of a platform to address the historic failure to invest sufficiently, justly and equally in underserved communities.

About DOT

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) mission is to ensure America has the safest, most efficient and modern transportation system in the world, which boosts our economic productivity and global competitiveness and enhances the quality of life in communities both rural and urban. The Office of the Assistant Secretary of Research and Technology (OST-R) leads DOT to advance innovation, technology transfer, and breakthrough knowledge; facilitate research and multimodal research collaboration; provide decision makers with useful statistics and information of the highest quality and integrity; and develop a skilled interdisciplinary transportation workforce for the nation.​​​​​​​

The challenge

With myriad new and emerging technologies poised to transform the way we move, how can PIFs help ensure our country’s current and future transportation systems are equitable and efficient?

On January 20, 2021 President Biden issued an Executive Order (EO) on Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government. The executive order recognizes that “advancing equity requires a systematic approach to embedding fairness in decision-making processes, executive departments and agencies (agencies) must recognize and work to redress inequities in their policies and programs that serve as barriers to equal opportunity.” In line with the EO directive, DOT (and all federal agencies) will determine “programs and policies for a review that will assess whether underserved communities and their members face systemic barriers in accessing benefits and opportunities available pursuant to those policies and programs.” The Presidential Innovation Fellow(s) would report directly to Robert Hampshire, the Assistant Secretary of Research and Technology (OST-R), to support the creation and/or implementation of an assessment methodology and platform to address the historic failure to invest sufficiently, justly, and equally in underserved communities, as well as individuals from those communities. In addition, they will be expected to work cross programmatically with DOT Policy staff and the CIO office.

The Presidential Innovation Fellow(s) will need to have significant experience with the full technology life-cycle (development, deployment, retirement/replacement). The PIF must be able to operate independently, as well as work in or lead teams to solve complex issues. The PIF is required to be proactive in understanding existing and potential problems while building relationships and leading change. The ability to communicate effectively at an executive level, both writing and presenting, is a must.

In bringing on a seasoned technology professional, we hope to augment the core team’s deep understanding of transportation or housing issues with data-driven solutions. Desired skills or expertise for Fellows include: Product management, data visualization, GIS and spatial mapping, urban planning.