The National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) is a national research program carried out through the collaborative efforts of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM), and the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO). Created in 1962 as a means to conduct research in acute problem areas that affect highway planning, design, construction, operation, and maintenance nationwide, the NCHRP is administered by the Transportation Research Board (TRB) and sponsored by the individual State departments of transportation (DOTs) of the AASHTO in cooperation with the FHWA.
The NCHRP is a voluntary program funded by the States on an annual basis. Funding for NCHRP comes to 5.5 percent of the 2 percent State planning and research (SP&R) funding set-aside from the Federal-aid highway program. Participation in the NCHRP allows States to leverage their research funding with that of other States to achieve similar research objectives without duplication of effort. This program affords a unique partnership between State, Federal, and private sector transportation experts.
NCHRP primarily focuses on the following research areas: pavements; economics; operations and control; general materials; illumination and visibility; snow and ice control; traffic planning; forecasting; bituminous materials; specifications, procedures, and practices; law; bridges; equipment; maintenance of highways and structures; general design; roadside development; safety; concrete materials; finance; special projects; testing and instrumentation; vehicle barrier systems; mechanics and foundations; and impact analysis. Information on NCHRP projects can be found at the NCHRP website.