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Sustainability News

DCDC News

February 27, 2014

Water management decision makers' evaluations of uncertainty in a decision support system: the case of WaterSim in the Decision Theater

Authors

Dave D. White, Decision Center for a Desert City, ASU

Amber Y. Wutich, School of Human Evolution and Social Change, ASU

Kelli L. Larson, School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning and the School of Sustainability, ASU

Tim Lant, U. S. Department of Health and Human Services

Abstract

DT_TimLant_296Model-based decision support systems are increasingly used to link knowledge to action for environmental decision making. How stakeholders perceive uncertainty in models and visualisations affects their perceptions of credibility, relevance and usability of these tools. This paper presents a case study of water decision makers’ evaluations of WaterSim, a dynamic water simulation model presented in an immersive decision theatre environment. Results reveal that decision makers’ understandings of uncertainty in their evaluations of decision support systems reflect both scientific and political discourse. We conclude with recommendations for design and evaluation of decision support systems that incorporate decision makers’ views.

Download the article from the Journal of Environmental Planning and Management