Structured Approach for Best-Value Evaluation Criteria: US Design–Build Highway Procurement Public Deposited
  • In best-value procurement, current practice shows that cost is frequently more influential than noncost factors, and consequently, the lowest bidder is chosen in most cases; thus, a best-value selection is not achieved. Design-builders cannot offer the best value in their proposals if evaluation criteria do not show precisely what constitutes best value and how best value is scored. Thus, the aim of this research is twofold: first, to identify how highway agencies articulate evaluation criteria and, second, to propose a structured approach that enhances current practice on writing evaluation criteria. Through the lens of decision analysis, the researchers conducted a content analysis on 540 evaluation criteria included in 98 requests for proposal (RFPs) from 21 states across the United States. The study showed that 43% of evaluation criteria were generic, 53% used a generic constructed scale, and 4% assigned points or levels directly. These three groups represent different levels of specificity in writing evaluation criteria. Building upon these levels and on decision analysis theory principles, this research proposes a structured approach to support highway agencies in the process of crafting evaluation criteria. More precise and specific evaluation criteria will enhance the proposals’ ability to offer the best value, which, in turn, will enhance the best-value selection process as a whole.


Date Issued
  • 2020
Academic Affiliation
Journal Title
Journal Issue/Number
  • 6
Journal Volume
  • 36
Last Modified
  • 2022-08-05
Resource Type
Rights Statement
  • 0742-597X