Evaluation, Comparison, and Improvement Recommendations for Caltrans Financial Programming Processes and Tools

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Evaluation, Comparison, and Improvement Recommendations for Caltrans Financial Programming Processes and Tools


The California Transportation Improvement Program System (CTIPS) is the main tool used by Caltrans’ Division of Financial Programming to support the business of transportation programming. It is a multi-agency joint-use project programming database system applied to develop and manage various state and federal transportation programming documents. The goal of this project is to evaluate CTIPS and explore various new options that will maintain the current functionality of CTIPS, meet legislative guidelines for ADA compliance, ensure security of the system, and have sufficient scalability and capabilities for integration with other systems in the future. The research is based on the review of current and historical documents, interviews, and surveys of the customers of the Division of Financial Programming; the survey of programming systems used by the other 49 states and District of Columbia (DC) in the U.S.; an interview with the CTIPS service support provider; and interviews and surveys of the software companies that provide services and products similar to CTIPS. This research identifies risks associated with CTIPS and opportunities for improvements; compares the processes in California with currently recognized best practices and with those used in the other states in the U.S.; and makes recommendations for the improvement of CTIPS. Research results could help Caltrans better capture current data needs and future analytics requirements and make an informed decision about modernizing and upgrading an essential programming database.



Dr. Wei is a Professor in the Department of Aviation and Technology at the College of Engineering at San José State University. He is also an Affiliated Professor in the Department of Industrial and System Engineering as well as Director of the Human Automation Integration Lab (HAIL) in the College of Engineering at San José State University. Before joining the faculty at San Jose State University, Dr. Wei was a research analyst in the Department of Operation Research and Decision Support at American Airlines. He has a Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley in transportation engineering and management. Dr. Wei’s research interests include: transportation planning; traffic control and management, multimodal transportation systems, rail and high-speed rail transportation, airport and airline management, unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), Advanced Air Mobility (AAM), logistics, and supply chain management. Dr. Wei has obtained more than $2 million of research grants from agencies such as FAA, NASA, and California Department of Transportation and has published more than 40 research papers in peer-reviewed journals or conference proceedings. 


Dr. Blampied’s research and teaching focus on project management in public transportation agencies. He teaches in the Master of Science in Transportation Management program at San José State University, and is a Research Associate at the Mineta Transportation Institute. Nigel retired from Caltrans in 2011 to pursue a Ph.D. at the University of California, Berkeley. He was a CTIPS user from its earliest stages as a FoxPro database, and he is familiar with the Caltrans project management and accounting systems, having designed the project management system and helped to design portions of the accounting system. Dr. Blampied also has extensive experience in writing national and international project management standards. He has represented the United States on the international committees on project, programme, and portfolio management standards, ISO PC236 and TC258, since their inception in 2007, and he was one of the three principal editors of the 2022 revision of the International Standard for Portfolio Management. 


Raajmaathangi currently is a graduate student in the Master of Science in Software Engineering program at San José State University. She earned a Bachelor of Technology, Information and Communication Technology from SASTRA University, Thanjvur, India. She is currently providing research assistance to the Mineta Transportation Institute through the SJSU Research Foundation. She has worked in the software development area for more than six years and is interested in gaining more experience creating applications from the development phase to the deployment phase involving best software processes and practices. 

February 2023
California Transportation Improvement Program System (CTIPS)
Processes and tools
ADA compliance
Comparison and improvement recommendations
Security of the system



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