Driver Perceptions and Sources of User Dissatisfaction in the Implementation of Variable Speed Limit Systems


This research explores technical innovation and the impact of resistance to innovation in the implementation of an active traffic management system. Technology-driven change initiatives are often difficult to implement and failure rates are high. Lack of success is often linked to failures in understanding the change environment or failure to account for human factors in the implementation of a new technology. This study explores stakeholder perceptions in the implementation of a variable speed limit (VSL) system in St. Louis, Missouri. Survey data from the driving public and law enforcement officials were analyzed during the first 2 years the VSL system was operational. High levels of dissatisfaction were present in survey results and indicated significant levels of resistance to innovation. Change management theory was used to link sources of dissatisfaction to common resistance factors. This provides an opportunity to develop strategies for the successful implementation of innovative traffic management systems. Decision makers involved with active traffic management will benefit from an understanding of the pervasive nature of resistance to innovation and an awareness of strategies for designing change management processes in innovative traffic systems.


Engineering Management and Systems Engineering

Second Department

Business and Information Technology

Third Department

Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Active Traffic Management System; Change Management; Intelligent Transportation Systems; Resistance To Innovation; Variable Speed Limit System; Implementation Process; Innovation; Perception; Traffic Management; Missouri; Saint Louis; United States

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)


Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


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