Engineering and large-scale infrastructure projects pose a unique challenge, as they affect multiple constituencies across multiple political boundaries.

By Joshua Joseph, Ph.D, Senior Technologist, CH2M HILL, James Llorens, Ph.D., Chancellor, Southern University, and David Guillory, P.E., Interim Director, City of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Department of Public Works

Joshua Joseph, along with co-authors James Llorens of Southern University and David Guillory of BTR Department of Public Works will present their paper “Customers and Clients, Critiques and Concerns: Toward a Paradigm for Policy Analytic Success Managing Multi-Component Strategic Implementation” on Tuesday, June 11 at 11:30 a.m., during the American Water Works Association’s Annual Conference and Exposition (ACE 13), in Denver, Colorado.  Learn more about CH2M HILL’s ACE 13 2013 participation and technical sessions.

As local governments aspire to develop, implement, manage and champion programs that benefit consumers and constituencies, it is important that a framework is created and strategically positioned to embrace multiple stakeholder-, multiple disciplined-, multiple objective-decision analytics.  This paradigm should be embraced appropriately at all levels of management, and all across vested interests to assure individual and corporate successes.

Our presentation will highlight several tools and techniques that have allowed the City of Baton Rouge, Louisiana and the Parish of East Baton Rouge to work cooperatively with CH2M HILL to manage the $1.4 billion Clean Water Act- and federal Consent Decree-driven Sanitary Sewer Overflow Control and Wastewater Facilities Program.  While science and engineering are the foundation of implementing the program effectively, navigating the multifaceted policy environment drives a significant portion of the short- and long-term decision processes.

Engineering and large-scale infrastructure projects pose a unique challenge.  These municipal projects tend to affect multiple constituencies across multiple political boundaries.  Internal and external tools have been developed to facilitate effective communication and support timely program delivery: (a) Program Delivery Plan; (b) One Month Look Ahead; (c) Metropolitan Council Informationals; (d) Bare Bones Cost Projections; (e) Annual Projects Bid Board; (f) Annual Projects Barrier Board; (g) Projects & Public Information Officers; and (h) Monthly Progress Reports.

Effective communication is critical to the success and timely completion of these complex projects.  However, the engineering and technical jargon inherent in describing them is often over the heads of the average citizen.  This challenge cannot prevent the job from getting done.  It therefore is an essential function of a primarily engineering-cultured organization to work across executive, legislative, and judicial branches to deftly manage community education, outreach, and expectations; and to conjoin engineering requirements with community expectations.

Dr. Joseph is a Senior Technologist for the Water Business Group in CH2M HILL’s Atlanta, Georgia office.  He specializes in groundwater hydrology, contaminant fate and transport, groundwater remediation, modeling, statistics, environmental resource economics, and public policy. He has more than 20 years of experience in academia, research and project management that bridges science, engineering, economics, public policy within and across the broad expanse of environmental and technology disciplines.