Advertisement

Problem Structuring and Multiple Criteria Decision Analysis

  • Valerie Belton
  • Theodor StewartEmail author
Part of the International Series in Operations Research & Management Science book series (ISOR, volume 142)

Abstract

This chapter addresses two complementary themes in relation to problem structuring and MCDA. The first and primary theme highlights the nature and importance of problem structuring for MCDA and then reviews suggested ways for how this process may be approached. The integrated use of problem structuring methods (PSMs) and MCDA is one such approach; this potential is explored in greater depth and illustrated by four short case studies. In reflecting on these and other experiences we conclude with a brief discussion of the complementary theme that MCDA can also be viewed as creating a problem structure within which many other standard tools of OR may be applied, and could therefore also be viewed as a PSM.

Keyword

Problem structuring Decision methodology Case studies 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. 1.
    R. L. Ackoff. The future of Operational Research is past. Journal of the Operational Research Society, 30:93–104, 1979.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    E. Atherton. Comment on ‘Rethinking value elicitation for personal consequential decisions’ by G Wright and P Goodwin. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 8:11–12, 1999.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    C. A. Bana e Costa, L. Ensslin, E. C. Corrêa, and J.-C. Vansnick. Decision support systems in action: integrated application in a multicriteria decision aid process. European Journal of Operational Research, 113:315–335, 1999.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    C. Banville, M. Landry, J.-M. Martel, and C. Boulaire. A stakeholder approach to MCDA. Systems Research and Behavioral Science, 15:15–32, 1998.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    E. Beinat. Comment on ‘Rethinking value elicitation for personal consequential decisions’ by G Wright and P Goodwin. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 8:14–15, 1999.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    D. E. Bell, R. L. Keeney, and H. Raiffa, editors. Conflicting Objectives in Decisions. John Wiley & Sons, Chichester, 1977.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    V. Belton. Multiple criteria decision analysis: practically the only way to choose. In L. Hendry and R. Eglese, editors, Operational Research Tutorial Papers. Operational Research Society, Birmingham, 1990.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    V. Belton and T. J. Stewart. Multiple Criteria Decision Analysis: An Integrated Approach. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Boston, 2002.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    V. Belton, F. Ackermann, and I. Shepherd. Integrated support from problem structuring through to alternative evaluation using COPE and V⋅I⋅S⋅A. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 6:115–130, 1997.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    P. Bennett, J. Bryant, and N. Howard. Drama theory and confrontation analysis. In Rational Analysis for a Problematic World Revisited, chapter 10.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    D. Bouyssou, P. Perny, M. Pirlot, A. Tsoukiàs, and Ph. Vincke. A manifesto for the new MCDA era. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 2:125–127, 1993.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    J. Brown, C. Cooper, and M. Pidd. A taxing problem: the complementary use of hard and soft OR in the public sector. European Journal of Operational Research, 172:666–679, 2006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    S. A. Brownlow and S. R. Watson. Structuring multi-attribute value hierarchies. Journal of the Operational Research Society, 38:309–318, 1987.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    C. M. Brugha. Structure of multi-criteria decision-making. Journal of the Operational Research Society, 55:1156–1168, 2004.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    J. M. Bryson, F. Ackermann, C. Eden, and C. B. Finn. Visible Thinking: Unlocking Causal Mapping for Practical Business Results. John Wiley & Sons, Chichester, 2004.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    J. Buchanan, M. Henig, and J. Corner. Comment on ‘Rethinking value elicitation for personal consequential decisions’ by G Wright and P Goodwin. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 8:15–17, 1999.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    D. M. Buede. Structuring value attributes. Interfaces, 16:52–62, 1986.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    P. Checkland. Soft systems methodology. In Rational Analysis for a Problematic World Revisited, chapter 4.Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    P. Checkland. Systems Thinking, Systems Practice. John Wiley & Sons, Chichester, 1981.Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    P. Checkland and J. Poulter. Learning for Action. A Short Definitive Account of Soft Systems Methodology and Its Use for Practitioners, Teachers and Students. John Wiley & Sons, Chichester, 2006.Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    P. Checkland and J. Scholes. Soft Systems Methodology in Action. John Wiley & Sons, Chichester, 1999.Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    J. Climaco, editor. Multicriteria Analysis. Springer-Verlag, Berlin, 1997.Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    J. L. Cochrane and M. Zeleny, editors. Multiple Criteria Decision Making. The University of South Carolina Press, Columbia, South Carolina, 1973.Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    J. Corner, J. Buchanan, and M. Henig. Dynamic decision problem structuring. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 10:129–141, 2001.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    H. G. Daellenbach. Systems and Decision Making. A Management Science Approach. John Wiley & Sons, Chichester, 1994.Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    H. G. Daellenbach. Multiple criteria decision making within Checkland’s Soft Systems Methodology. In Multicriteria Analysis, pages 51–60.Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    H. G. Daellenbach and V. Nilakant. Comment on ‘Rethinking value elicitation for personal consequential decisions’ by G Wright and P Goodwin. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 8:17–19, 1999.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    A. David. Comment on ‘Rethinking value elicitation for personal consequential decisions’ by G Wright and P Goodwin. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 8:19–20, 1999.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    A. De Geus. Planning as learning. Harvard Business Review, pages 70–74, Mar/Apr 1998.Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    J. Dewey. The pattern of inquiry (from Logic The Theory Of Inquiry published by Henry Holt and Co.), reproduced in: The Essential Dewey (Vol 2): Ethics, Logic and Psychology (1998), Hickman, L. A. and Alexander, T. M. (Eds), pages 169–179, Indiana University Press, Bloomington and Indianapolis, USA, 1938.Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    C. Eden. Cognitive mapping: a review. European Journal of Operational Research, 36:1–13, 1988.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    C. Eden. Using cognitive mapping for strategic options development and analysis (SODA). In Rational Analysis for a Problematic World, pages 21–42.Google Scholar
  33. 33.
    C. Eden and F. Ackermann. Where next for problem structuring methods? Journal of the Operational Research Society, 57:766–768, 2006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    C. Eden and F. Ackermann. SODA – the principles. In Rational Analysis for a Problematic World Revisited, pages 21–41.Google Scholar
  35. 35.
    C. Eden and F. Ackermann. Making Strategy: The Journey of Strategic Management. SAGE Publications, London, 1998.Google Scholar
  36. 36.
    C. Eden and S. Jones. Using repertory grids for problem construction. Journal of the Operational Research Society, 35:779–790, 1984.Google Scholar
  37. 37.
    C. Eden and J. Radford, editors. Tackling Strategic Problems: The Role of Group Decision Support. SAGE Publications, London, 1990.Google Scholar
  38. 38.
    C. Eden and P. Simpson. SODA and cognitive mapping in practice. In (82), pages 43–70.Google Scholar
  39. 39.
    L. Ensslin, G. Montibeller, and M. V. Lima. Constructing and implementing a DSS to help evaluate perceived risk of accounts receivable. In Y. Y. Haimes and R. E. Steuer, editors, Research and Practice in Multi-Criteria Decision Making, pages 248–259. Springer, Berlin, 2000.Google Scholar
  40. 40.
    P. C. Fishburn. Comment on ‘Rethinking value elicitation for personal consequential decisions’ by G. Wright and P. Goodwin. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 8:20–21, 1999.Google Scholar
  41. 41.
    J. Friend. The strategic choice approach. In (83), chapter 6.Google Scholar
  42. 42.
    Y. Y. Haimes, W. A. Hall, and H. T. Freedman. Multiobjective Optimization in Water Resources Systems: The Surrogate Worth Tradeoff Method. Elsevier, Amsterdam, 1975.Google Scholar
  43. 43.
    M. Henig and H. Katz. R& D project selection: a decision process approach. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 5:169–177, 1996.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. 44.
    M. I. Henig and A. Weintraub. A dynamic objective-subjective structure for forest management focusing on environmental issues. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 14:55–65, 2006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. 45.
    P. Humphreys and A. Wishuda. Multi-attribute utility decomposition. Technical Report 79-2/2, Brunel University, Decision Analysis Unit, Uxbridge, Middlesex, 1980.Google Scholar
  46. 46.
    C. L. Hwang and A. S. Masud. Multiple Objective Decision Making – Methods and Applications, volume 164 of Lecture Notes in Economics and Mathematical Systems. Springer-Verlag, Berlin, 1979.Google Scholar
  47. 47.
    A. Joubert, T. Stewart, L. Scott, J. Matthee, L. de Vries, A Gilbert, R. Janssen, and M. van Herwijnen. Fishing rights and small-scale fishers: an evaluation of the rights allocation process and the utilisation of fishing rights in South Africa. Technical report, PREM, 2005. URL http://www.prem-online.org/index.php?p=publications&a=show&id=67.
  48. 48.
    A. R. Joubert, R. Janssen, and T. J. Stewart. Allocating fishing rights in South Africa: a participatory approach. Fisheries Management and Ecology, 15:27–37, 2007.Google Scholar
  49. 49.
    R. L. Keeney. Developing a foundation for strategy at Seagate software. Interfaces, 29(6):4–15, 1999.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. 50.
    R. L. Keeney. The value of internet commerce to the customer. Management Science, 15:533–542, 1999.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. 51.
    R. L. Keeney. Value-Focused Thinking: A Path to Creative Decision Making. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1992.Google Scholar
  52. 52.
    R. L. Keeney and T. L. McDaniels. Value focused thinking about strategic decisions at BC hydro. Interfaces, 22(3):269–290, 1992.Google Scholar
  53. 53.
    R. L. Keeney and H. Raiffa. Decisions with Multiple Objectives. John Wiley & Sons, New York, 1976.Google Scholar
  54. 54.
    G. A. Kelly. The Psychology of Personal Constructs. Norton, New York, 1955.Google Scholar
  55. 55.
    A. W. Kimball. Errors of the third kind in statistical consulting. Journal of the American Statistical Association, 52:133–142, 1957.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. 56.
    K. Kotiadis and J. Mingers. Combining PSMs with hard OR methods: the philosophical and practical challenges. Journal of the Operational Research Society, 57:856–867, 2006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. 57.
    M. Landry. A note on the concept of problem. Organization Studies, 16:315–343, 1995.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. 58.
    M. Landry, D. Pascot, and D. Briolat. Can DSS evolve without changing our view of the concept of problem? Decision Support Systems, 1:25–36, 1983.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. 59.
    M. Landry, C. Banville, and M. Oral. Model legitimisation in operational research. European Journal of Operational Research, 92:443–457, 1996.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. 60.
    O. G. Leon. Valued-focused thinking versus alternative focused thinking: effects on generation of objectives. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, 80:213–227, 1999.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. 61.
    F. B. Losa and V. Belton. Combining MCDA and conflict analysis: an exploratory application of an integrated approach. Journal of the Operational Research Society, 56:1–16, 2005.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. 62.
    J. G. March. Decisions and Organisations. Blackwell, Oxford, 1988.Google Scholar
  63. 63.
    G. A. Mendoza and H. Martins. Multi-criteria decision analysis in natural resource management: a critical review of methods and new modelling paradigms. Forest Ecology and Management, 230:1–22, 2006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. 64.
    I. I. Mitroff and T. R. Featheringham. On systemic problem solving and the error of the third kind. Behavioral Science, 19:383–393, 1974.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. 65.
    G. Montibeller and V. Belton. Qualitative operators for reasoning maps. European Journal of Operational Research, 195:829–840, 2009.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. 66.
    G. Montibeller, V. Belton, and M. V. Lima. Supporting factoring transactions in Brazil using 38 maps: a language-based DSS for evaluating accounts receivable. Decision Support Systems, 42:2085–2092, 2007.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. 67.
    G. Montibeller, V. Belton, F. Ackermann, and L. Ensslin. Reasoning maps for decision aid: an integrated approach for problem-structuring and multi-criteria evaluation. Journal of the Operational Research Society, 59:575–589, 2008.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. 68.
    V. Mousseau, R. Slowinski, and P. Zielniewicz. A user-oriented implementation of the ELECTRE-TRI method integrating preference elicitation support. Computers and Operations Research, 27:757–777, 199.Google Scholar
  69. 69.
    L. M. P. Neves, A. G. Martins, C. H. Antunes, and L. C. Dias. Using SSM to rethink the analysis of energy efficiency initiatives. Journal of the Operational Research Society, 55:968–975, 2004.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. 70.
    M. F. Norese. A process perspective and multicriteria approach in decision-aiding contexts. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 5:133–144, 1996.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. 71.
    A. Ostanello. Validation aspects of a prototype solution implementation to solve a complex MC problem. In Multicriteria Analysis, pages 61–74.Google Scholar
  72. 72.
    A. Ostanello and A. Tsoukiàs. An explicative model of ‘public’ interorganizational interactions. European Journal of Operational Research, 70:67–82, 1993.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  73. 73.
    A. Pearman. Comment on ‘Rethinking value elicitation for personal consequential decisions’ by G Wright and P Goodwin. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 8:21–22, 1999.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  74. 74.
    L. D. Phillips. A theory of requisite decision models. Acta Psychologica, 56:29–48, 1984.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  75. 75.
    L. D. Phillips. Decision analysis for group decision support. In Tackling Strategic Problems: The Role of Group Decision Support, pages 142–153.Google Scholar
  76. 76.
    L. D. Phillips and M. C. Phillips. Facilitated work groups: theory and practice. Journal of the Operational Research Society, 44:533–549, 1993.Google Scholar
  77. 77.
    M. Pidd. Tools for Thinking. John Wiley & Sons, Chichester, 2nd edition, 2003.Google Scholar
  78. 78.
    M. Pidd. Complementarity in systems modelling. In M. Pidd, editor, Systems Modelling: Theory and Practice, pages 1–19. John Wiley & Sons, Chichester, 2004.Google Scholar
  79. 79.
    H. W. J. Rittel and M. M. Webber. Dilemmas in a general theory of planning. Policy Science, 4:155–169, 1973.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  80. 80.
    J. Rosenhead. Robustness analysis: keeping your options open. In Rational Analysis for a Problematic World Revisited, chapter 8.Google Scholar
  81. 81.
    J. Rosenhead. Past, present and future of problem structuring methods. Journal of the Operational Research Society, 57:759–765, 2006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  82. 82.
    J. Rosenhead, editor. Rational Analysis for a Problematic World. John Wiley & Sons, Chichester, 1989.Google Scholar
  83. 83.
    J. Rosenhead and J. Mingers, editors. Rational Analysis for a Problematic World Revisited. John Wiley & Sons, Chichester, second edition, 2001.Google Scholar
  84. 84.
    B. Roy. Méthodologie Multicritère d’Aide à la Décision. Economica, Paris, 1985.Google Scholar
  85. 85.
    B. Roy. Decision science or decision-aid science? European Journal of Operational Research, 66:184–203, 1993.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  86. 86.
    B. Roy. Multicriteria Methodology for Decision Aiding. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, 1996.Google Scholar
  87. 87.
    J. E. Russo and P. J. H. Schoemaker. Decision Traps. Fireside, New York, 1989.Google Scholar
  88. 88.
    T. L. Saaty. Comment on ‘Rethinking value elicitation for personal consequential decisions’ by G Wright and P Goodwin. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 8:23–24, 1999.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  89. 89.
    E. H. Schein. Process Consultation Revisited: Building the Helping Relationship. Addison Wesley, MA, 1999.Google Scholar
  90. 90.
    R. Scheubrein and S. Zionts. A problem structuring front end for a multiple criteria decision support system. Computers & Operations Research, 33:18–31, 2006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  91. 91.
    D. A. Schon. Educating the Reflective Practitioner: Towards a New Design for Teaching and Learning in the Professions. Jossey Bass, San Francisco, 1987.Google Scholar
  92. 92.
    B. Schoner, E. U. Choo, and W. C. Wedley. Comment on ‘Rethinking value elicitation for personal consequential decisions’ by G Wright and P Goodwin. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 8:24–26, 1999.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  93. 93.
    D. Shaw, A. Franco, and M. Westcombe. Problem structuring methods: new directions in a problematic world. Journal of the Operational Research Society, 57: 757–758, 2006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  94. 94.
    T. J. Stewart, A. Joubert, and R. Janssen. MCDA framework for fishing rights allocation in South Africa. Group Decision and Negotiation, 2009 (to appear: DOI 10.1007/s10726-009-9159-9).Google Scholar
  95. 95.
    H. Thiriez and S. Zionts, editors. Multiple Criteria Decision Making: Proceedings Jouy-en-Josas, France. Springer-Verlag, Berlin, 1976.Google Scholar
  96. 96.
    A. Tsoukiàs. On the concept of decision aiding process: an operational perspective. Annals of Operations Research, 154:3–27, 2007.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  97. 97.
    A. Tsoukias. Comment on ‘Rethinking value elicitation for personal consequential decisions’ by G Wright and P Goodwin. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 8:26–27, 1999.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  98. 98.
    D. von Winterfeldt. Structuring decision problems for decision analysis. Acta Psychologica, 45:71–93, 1980.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  99. 99.
    D. von Winterfeldt and W. Edwards. Decision Analysis and Behavioral Research. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1986.Google Scholar
  100. 100.
    S. R. Watson and D. M. Buede. Decision Synthesis. The Principles and Practice of Decision Analysis. Cambridge University Press, 1987.Google Scholar
  101. 101.
    G. Wright and P. Goodwin. Rethinking value elicitation for personal consequential decisions. Journal of Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis, 8:3–10, 1999.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  102. 102.
    M. Zeleny. Multiple Criteria Decision Making. McGraw-Hill, New York, 1982.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Management ScienceThe University of StrathclydeGlasgowScotland
  2. 2.Department of Statistical SciencesUniversity of Cape TownRondeboschSouth Africa

Personalised recommendations