Doug Gransberg


Affiliate Researcher





Donald and Sharon Greenwood Chair Professor, Department of Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering



About Doug

Dr. Gransberg has a doctorate in civil engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He is also a registered professional engineer in Oklahoma, Texas, and Oregon, certified cost engineer, designated design-build professional, and a fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors in the United Kingdom.

Before moving to academia in 1994, he spent more than 20 years in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers retiring at the rank of lieutenant colonel. His research spans the full lifecycle of highway engineering, construction, and maintenance, from the procurement of new projects using alternative methods such as construction manager/general contractor (CMGC) and design-build (DB) to the preservation and maintenance of pavements and bridges. Dr. Gransberg is the author of the AASHTO Guidebook on CMGC Contracting. He also assisted the Minnesota Department of Transportation in drafting that state’s enabling legislation on CMGC. He was on the Oklahoma Governor’s Task Force on Construction Law for 12 years and helped draft DB and CMGC legislation for that state. He has acted as a consultant on alternative project delivery for DOTs in 23 states, and he is currently assisting the Rhode Island Department of Transportation in developing a variation on CMGC called “early contractor involvement.”

His research has received awards from the Transportation Research Board, several U.S. state DOTs, and the New Zealand Transport Agency. In 2010, Dr. Gransberg was named to the Federal Highway Administration’s “Every Day Counts” (EDC) program team, and he was awarded contracts to facilitate the implementation of the EDC initiatives and the Strategic Highway Research Program 2 renewal project, which he and his colleagues developed. He is the author of more than 200 journal articles, conference papers, and research/technical reports, and he has generated more than $13 million in externally funded research.


  • PhD, Civil Engineering (Construction Engineering Management option), University of Colorado, Boulder, CO, 2004
  • MS, Civil Engineering (dual major: Construction Engineering Management and Transportation Engineering), Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR, 1979
  • BS, Civil Engineering, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR, 1974

Transportation and Construction Research

September 1995–present: Principal Investigator/Co-PI, 53 funded research projects worth a total value of $4.5 million sponsored by National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP), the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Departments of Transportation in Iowa (Iowa DOT), Montana (MDT), Ohio (ODOT) Oklahoma (OkDOT), Oregon (OrDOT), Texas (TxDOT), Washington (WSDOT), North Carolina (NCDOT), and several privately funded research institutes.

Selected Research on Alternative Project Delivery Methods

Principal Investigator

  • “Indefinite Quantity/Indefinite Delivery Contracting Guide,” MnDOT Project 2012-221, 2012–2014.
  • “Guidelines for Managing Geotechnical Risks in Design-Build Projects,” NCHRP Project 24-44, 2015–2017.
  • “AASHTO Partnering Handbook, Second Edition,” 2015–2017, NCHRP Project 19-10.
  • “Preconstruction Services Estimating Guidebook,” 2012–2015, NCHRP Project 15-51.
  • “A Guidebook for Construction Manager-at-Risk Contracting for Highway Projects” 2011–2013, NCHRP Project 10-85.
  • “Alliance Contracting” 2013–2014, NCHRP Project 45-16.

Co-Principal Investigator

  • “Develop Framework for CMGC Project Delivery,” 2010–2011, MnDOT.
  • “Barriers to Right-of-Way Acquisition and Recommendations for Change,” 2015–2016, MnDOT.
  • “Liability of Design-Builders for Design, Construction, and Acquisition Claims,” 2013-2015, NCHRP Legal.
  • “Project Management Strategies for Complex Projects,” 2009–2011, SHRP2 Project R-10.
  • “A Guidebook for the Evaluation of Transit Project Delivery Methods,” 2006–2008, TCRP G-08.
  • “Alternative Quality Management Systems for Highway Construction,” 2010–2013, NCHRP 10-83.

Selected Publications on Alternative Project Delivery Method

  • Comparing Construction Manager/General Contractor (CMGC) and Federal Early Contractor Involvement (ECI) Project Delivery Methods. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, No. 2408, 2016.
  • Alternative Technical Concepts: A Geotechnical Risk Management Tool. Journal of Structural Integrity and Maintenance,1, No. 1, 2016, with Tapia P. R.M.
  • US Partnering Programs and International Partnering Contracts and Alliances. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, No. 2504, 2015, pp. 73–77, with E. Scheepbouwer.
  • Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity Contracting: A Case Study Analysis. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, No. 2408, 2014, pp. 17–25, with J. Rueda.
  • Project Complexity Mapping in Five Dimensions for Complex Transport Projects. Journal of Management in Engineering, ASCE, Vol. 29, No. 4, 2013, pp. 316–326, with et al.
  • Case Studies of Early Contractor Design Involvement to Expedite the Delivery of Emergency Highway Projects. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, No. 2347, 2013, pp. 19–26.
  • Applying Alternative Technical Concepts to Construction Manager/General Contractor Project Delivery. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, No. 2408, 2014, pp. 10–16.
  • A Framework for Performance Based Contractor Prequalification. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, 2151, 2010, pp. 55–59.

Selected Research on Pavement Preservation Management

Principal Investigator

  • “Alternate Design/Alternate Bid Process for Pavement Type Selection,” 2015-2016, NCHRP Project 47-02.
  • “An Integrated Project- to Enterprise-Level Decision Making Framework for Prioritization of Accelerated Bridge Construction,” 2015-2017, ABC- UTC.
  • “Chips Seal Design and Specifications,” 2014-2016, ODOT/SPR-777, Oregon DOT.
  • “Asset Management Program Enhancement Plan: Baseline Assessment.” 2012–2014, Iowa DOT.
  • “Analysis of Aggregates and Binders Used for Chip Seal Program,” 2009–2010, OkDOT.
  • “Microsurfacing Best Practices,” 2009–2010, NCHRP Project 41-12.
  • “Chip Seal Surface Texture Measurement Using Digital Image Processing,” 2004–2005, Land Transport New Zealand.

Selected Publications on Pavement Preservation and Asset Management

  • Integrating Social Impact to Bridge Asset Management Plan. Infrastructure Asset Management, Vol. 1, No. 1, 2015, with M.C. Miller.
  • Carbon Footprint Cost Index: A Pavement Case Study, Procedia Engineering, Vol 18, 2015  781–786, with R.D. Mosier.
  • Applying Social Return on Investment to Risk-Based Transportation Asset Management Plans in Low Volume Bridges. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, No. 2473, 2015, pp. 66–71, with Miller, M.C., Rueda-Benavides, J.A.
  • Utility Management System Benefits and Barriers from the Local Agency Perspective. Journal of Infrastructure Systems, 2015, with Lee, M.C., Rueda-Benavides, J.A.
  • Life Cycle Cost-Based Pavement Preservation Treatment Design. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, 2235, 2011 with D. Pittenger, M. Zaman, and C. Riemer.

Professional Affiliations, Honors, and Service

  • Professional Engineer, Oregon, Texas, Oklahoma
  • Chair, TRB Standing Committee AFH15: Project Delivery Methods
  • Member, TRB, Standing Committee AHD18: Pavement Preservation