U.S. DOT’s Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program: Key Components and Issues

The United States Department of Transportation’s (DOT’s) Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) program has endured for nearly 40 years. This national program helps to correct a historic imbalance in opportunities for minority- and women-owned small businesses in DOT-assisted contracting. The program ensures that federally funded highway, transit, and airport contracts and associated subcontracts are available to all firms on a nondiscriminatory basis. Recipients of DOT transportation funds through the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), and the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) all must comply with the program. This article explores the DBE program's history, purpose, and key components. In addition, challenges are discussed including: uniformity of practice; resource allocation and oversight; counting correctly; and supplier and regular dealer concerns.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; Photos; References;
  • Pagination: pp 11-17
  • Serial:
    • TR News
    • Issue Number: 318
    • Publisher: Transportation Research Board
    • ISSN: 0738-6826
  • Publication flags:

    Open Access (libre)

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01687860
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Dec 4 2018 4:25PM