Comparing Contract Administration Functions for Alternative and Traditional Delivery of Highway Projects

Dean Papajohn, Mounir El Asmar, Keith R. Molenaar, Doug Alleman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Agency roles and responsibilities for contract administration depend on the contracting method. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has encouraged agencies to consider alternative contracting methods (ACMs) like design-build (DB) and construction manager/general contractor (CM/GC). There is a lack of information available to transportation agencies regarding the details of agency-performed contract administration functions between ACMs and traditional design-bid-build (DBB) delivery. This paper contributes to the existing body of knowledge of highway contract administration by revealing similarities and differences between agency-performed contract administration functions across contracting methods through the development of integrated definition function models (IDEF0). These IDEF0 models depict the hierarchy of contract administration functions for DBB, CM/GC, and DB highway projects and reveal differences such as developing alignment, administering preconstruction services, managing work packages, and creating risk pools for additional scope. The findings can help agencies make more informed decisions about selecting and administering contracting methods, especially as they relate to establishing the level of effort and skills needed for administering projects under various contracting methods. In addition, these IDEF0 models provide a novel framework for future research on highway contract administration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number04019038
JournalJournal of Management in Engineering
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Engineering
  • Industrial relations
  • Strategy and Management
  • Management Science and Operations Research


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