RESIN Resources


RESIN State of the Art Report (6) 

Decision Support 



D. Wijnmalen, V. Kamphuis, R. Willems




Executive Summary

Adaptation to climate change is a wicked problem. It is characterised by many uncertainties on what actually is the problem, what are problem boundaries, who has ownership, what information and with what quality is available, and how is the process organised to face the challenges. Coping with ‘wicked’ problems essentially requires a ‘soft’ human-judgement based approach, and supported by quantifiable data and information for underlying elements of the problem.

This state of the art report on Decision Support presents a general approach for ‘wicked’ problems. Focus is on the four-A stage framework and decision support methods and tools. Its aim is to reduce uncertainties and to cope with remaining uncertainties when developing solutions.

This framework offers a structured step-wise approach to face the problem, for improved and shared understanding what is at stake, and to find commitment to a general way forward, while considering alternative options and solutions. With this a characterization of different ‘problem-types’ and of ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ decision support methods is given. Focus of this overview is on human-based decision support. The basis for this overview is the “Guide for Judgement Based Operational Analysis in Defence Decision Making” (Wijnmalen, 2012).

Other work packages of RESIN address issues with methods and tools that are of a more quantified nature. In the sequel of the RESIN project the approach and information provided here, will serve as input for the RESIN Decision Support System (WP6).