28 October 2021 | Our Work

View from the top: Innovation survey findings

Earlier this year LCRIG conducted an Innovation survey which was kindly facilitated by the Asphalt Industry Alliance (AIA) as a voluntary addendum to its ALARM Survey, carried out at the beginning of 2021. We undertook this work as we wanted to understand: How much has the innovation bug caught hold in highways? Are those who are embracing innovation getting it right? And what barriers still need to be knocked down? To gauge the extent of innovation activity across the sector, and the appetite for change, LCRIG invited councils to take part in this important survey which received responses from a total of 85 councils.

As you may know innovation in our sector is close to my heart so I’m delighted to say that the comprehensive findings from this work will be published in a report early next week and I would encourage you to read it.

In short, some of the key findings were:

  • It was widely acknowledged that local highway departments within councils have yet to embed a strong innovation culture.
  • There was a recognition that more must be done to drive innovation forward in the highways sector.
  • There are many reasons why innovation is not accelerating but funding was perhaps unsurprisingly seen as the prime barrier to delivering more innovation in the highways sector.
  • Respondents to the survey from English councils said that the political leaders within their authorities are aware of and support the benefits of innovation. The average score on a scale of 1-10, where 1 is low, was 7 – showing that there is a will to push forward innovation within councils.
  • Attracting new people into the highways sector has always been seen as a key challenge and innovation can be a way of helping overcome this.

The report contains much more detail and provides an important ‘insight’ to our ever changing world.