Annals of Operations Research

, Volume 245, Issue 1–2, pp 177–207 | Cite as

A participatory multi-criteria approach for power generation and transmission planning

  • Valentin BertschEmail author
  • Wolf Fichtner


The energy sector continues to undergo substantial structural changes. Currently, the expansion of renewable energy sources and the decentralisation of energy supply lead to new players entering the market who pursue different objectives and have different preferences. Thus, multiple and usually conflicting targets need to be considered. Moreover, recent public reactions towards infrastructure projects highlight the importance of considering public acceptance as a key dimension of decision making in the energy sector. As a result, decision processes grow more complex at all levels from political to strategic, tactical and operational decisions in companies. We therefore present an approach combining power systems analysis considering grid constraints and multi-criteria decision analysis. The approach focusses on multi-dimensional sensitivity analyses allowing for simultaneous variations of the different preference parameters determined within the decision analysis aimed at facilitating preference elicitation and consensus building in group decisions. The focus of the paper is the demonstration of the presented approach for a power generation and transmission planning case study in the context of the energy transition in Germany.


Multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA) Power systems analysis (PSA) Transformation of energy systems Participatory decision processes 



The content of this paper is closely related to work accomplished within the research project ‘Technologies for the Future Power Grid’, supported by the Helmholtz Association as a so-called ‘Energy Alliance’. The authors wish to acknowledge the support by the Helmholtz Association and all involved project partners.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Chair of Energy EconomicsKarlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)KarlsruheGermany

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