Transportation Technology Tournament


The National Operations Center of Excellence (NOCoE) and the U.S. DOT ITS JPO PCB program are hosting a competition for students to work directly with public agencies to solve real-world transportation problems utilizing ITS and TSMO solutions.

Student teams will assemble to work with a State or local DOT, MPO, or transit agency to define a transportation problem. After submitting an initial contest application identifying the team and the problem, students will work with academic advisors to learn about potential ITS and TSMO solutions via online training programs outlined below. Teams will then utilize their experience, education, and new coursework to develop a solution or suite of solutions to directly address the originally defined problem. Students will submit their solutions via a proposal. Finalist teams will develop a presentation and then participate in a live event at ITE 2020 in New Orleans, LA. For those teams selected to the final event, travel, lodging, and registration fees for three team members. At ITE, teams will give a presentation in front of a panel of judges made up of leaders in the ITS and TSMO community. One team will then be selected as the 2020 Transportation Technology Tournament Winner.

The 2018 and 2019 tournaments featured extremely competitive teams with innovative solutions. More information on previous years is available via the menu on your left.

Team Composition

Teams are 4 members minimum, 6 members maximum, with at least 1 non-civil engineer (ex. planner, electrical engineer, computer science engineer, statistician, etc.) and at least 2 team members younger than 26 years old.  Teams must have an academic sponsor/advisor, and a state or local DOT member and/or engineer at a private engineering consultancy to advise the team.

Challenge Problems

Teams have two choices in identifying a challenge problem:

  • Work with their state, regional or local agency to identify a transportation problem requiring a TSMO solution
  • Select from a list of challenge problems that will be provided by specific agencies for this tournament.

Leading up to the submission deadline, we will work with state and local agencies to identify specific challenge problems available for teams to choose. These challenge problems will be catered towards ITS and TSMO solutions and aim to spark innovative solutions not yet seen by agencies. Check back as we update this page with those challenge problems.

Initial Application

Teams must submit their applications to participate in the TTT via the online form on NOCoE’s website.

 The initial application must include:

  • List of team members, including age and degree being pursued.
  • For each team member: One-page resume (like a private consulting firm would do when they submit a bid for a project – to show they have qualified staff) and headshot photo.
  • Formal selection of the problem. (Note: teams can submit a problem statement from their own State DOT or other public agency, and receive input and/or approval by the competition organizers.)
  • Signed waivers that allow the USDOT, NOCoE, and ITS America to use/reuse/publish photos, images, presentations, etc. in printed materials and on websites.
  • A statement of team dynamics and methodologies: how frequently they intend to meet, how they intend to take trainings, what the roles & responsibilities of each team member are, etc.

Applications to join the tournament must be submitted via the online form no later than Sunday, February 17 at 11:59 ET.

2020 Timeline

Below is an outline of the steps and process of the 2020 Transportation Technology Tournament

Friday February 14, 2020: Deadline for TTT Applications

Submit your team information via the online form to join the Transportation Technology Tournament.

Thursday, February 20, 2020: Kick-off Webinar Informational Session

The Kick-off Webinar will take place on February 20, 2020. At least one member from each team needs to attend this webinar live. A recording will be available for sharing with the rest of the participants. The webinar will cover guidance for the overall tournament, submission processes for each check-in and deadline, and overal advice on how to win the tournament. Webinar information will be posted here and sent to all teams ahead of time.

Friday, March 13, 2020: Interim Check-In #1: Training, Part 1

Teams will submit a packe  demonstrating their completion of the following ITS PCB courses (submission - course certificates):

The packet will include proof of completion for each course from each team member. Submission instructions will be provided during the kick-off webinar.

Friday, April 3, 2020: Interim Check-In #2: Training, Part 2

Academic or industry advisors were also responsible for teaching students Con-Ops and ITS Civil Engineering Design. Advisors led the team through the following ITS Case Study Courses, found on the ITS JPO Professional Capacity Building Program:

  • ITS Case Study Course: Con-Ops (submission – course deliverable)

  • ITS Case Study Course: Civil Engineering Design (submission – course deliverable)

Teams will submit a packet demonstrating their completion of the above ITS Case Study Courses.

Friday, May 15, 2020: Solution Definition and High-Level Con-Op

Teams will submit a 10-page packet describing their solution. The packet will include:

  • Description of problem
    • Scoping the dynamics of the site and the problem, identifying requirements for solution, identifying stakeholders, etc.
  • Description of solution
    • How this could address the problem
    • Who the players are within that solution
  • Con-ops for solution, including:
    • High-level functional architecture
    • High-level physical architecture
    • High-level enterprise architecture
  • An estimate for the work needed to develop and implement the solution including:
    • Cost breakdown
    • Timeline
  • Anticipated impacts
    • Operational benefits
    • Safety benefits
    • Mobility benefits
    • Environmental benefits
    • Other benefits and risks

Judges panel will review the submissions and select  finalists to go to ITE 2020 to present in person.

End of June 2020: Finalist Presentation Practice Runs

Finalists will be asked to give at least two practice presentations ahead of the live competition and receive feedback from the organizing committee.

August 2020: Live Competition at ITE Annual Meeting in New Orleans, LA

Finalist teams will attend the Live Competition at the ITE Annual Meeting. Students will have 10 minutes to present to a panel of judges and a live audience and face a question and answer session from the judges.


If you have any questions, please contact Adam Hopps with the National Operations Center of Excellence.